As the pandemic rages on?
Grade school students are being given iPad and told to stay home and tune into ‘Zoom’ on line sessions….
THAT is NOT a good thing on different levels for a generation of American kids….
Added to this is the increased cuts in school budgets which results in jobs cuts due to closed or drastically reduced school enrollments with virus restrictions….
Disadvantaged students are much more likely than others to be engaged in remote schooling during the coronavirus pandemic, increasing the risk that less effective instruction will widen the achievement gap, according to the first comprehensive analysis of attendance patterns.
Using cellphone data to track movement to more than 100,000 schools, researchers at Columbia University found that classrooms that had closed were disproportionately composed of nonwhite students, as well as students with low math scores or limited English proficiency or who are poor enough to qualify for free meals.
About 58 percent of nonwhite students attend schools that rely heavily on remote learning, compared with 36 percent of white students. Remote learning is widely considered less successful than traditional classrooms, especially for younger children.
“Given the sheer magnitude of the students affected, this does not bode well,” said Zachary Parolin, the study’s lead author. “Inequality in learning outcomes is only more likely to grow.”
Others experts have warned that disadvantaged students often lack the support that remote learning requires, such as computer access, quiet study space and help from parents or tutors. The Columbia study shows how the students least equipped for virtual instruction are those most likely to have encountered it this year….
Public schools in many parts of the country are headed for a financial cliff, as the coronavirus drives up the costs of education while tax revenue and student enrollment continue to fall.
Schools can expect about $54 billion from the coronavirus stimulus plan approved by Congress late Monday night. But officials say that’s not nearly enough to make up for the crushing losses state and local budgets have suffered during the pandemic, or the costs of both remote learning and attempts to bring students back to classrooms.
Advocates for public education estimate that schools have lost close to $200 billion so far.
“We’re going to need way more investment both in the short term, to deal with Covid, and in the long term,” said Chip Slaven, a lobbyist for the National School Boards Association.
The pandemic has already forced schools across the country to fire nonunion employees, spending the money instead on remote learning technology, retrofitting buildings, testing and surveillance programs, and other coronavirus-related expenses. Education has been among the hardest hit parts of the economy, according to an analysis by the Pew Charitable Trusts, with employment down 8.8 percent in October from the year before and lower than at any point in the past two decades — a loss of millions of jobs….