Pandemic and loss of education

Kansas City, Mo. – When Rosemary Zamarripa started kindergarten at Silver City Elementary School in Kansas City, Kansas, last year, her first acquaintance with the school was virtual.

“She reads more, you know, she collects more things because you know weeks and months go by,” said her mother, Susan Zamarippa.

Susan spent her time between work and trying to educate her daughter through online education at home.

“And it was kind of hard for him because he knew, ‘I don’t want to do this, Mom’? And it was kind of different for him,” Susan said.

Then, when Rosemary was finally able to go to school for personal study, Susan was worried that her daughter was already lagging behind.

“It was a bit of math and a bit of reading for him,” Susan Zamarippa said.

These observations are consistent with what numerous studies have shown about the loss of learning in the pandemic.

A study by the consulting firm McKinsey and Company found that K-12 students were on average five months behind in math and four months behind in reading.

According to the study, this hit “the most historically vulnerable students”.

Schools with predominantly black students are six months behind, and students from low-income schools are seven months behind.

The study continued that this could lead to long-term effects, including “the opportunity to go to college and eventually find a suitable job”.

McKinsey and the company claim that without intervention, this loss of learning could result in students earning less than $ 49,000 to $ 61,000 in their lifetime.

And it’s not the only research that identifies student problems.

The Politico article discussed the results of standardized tests called “iReady tests”.

While test scores as a whole showed that more students struggled, it was broken down by age group.

It found that “second- and third-graders who were still learning to read” and “adolescents who could not understand the transition from case mathematics to conceptual mathematics” were the most affected.

And it’s not just test scores.

These results confirm what teachers see.

The CNBC article refers to a study by Horace Mann Educators Corporation.

The study surveyed approximately 950 teachers across the United States

Of the respondents, 53% reported significant learning losses among students. 44% reported a slight loss of training. And only 3% said they saw no training losses.

But, what do teachers see here in the Kansas City area and what do they hear from parents?

Darcy Swan, director of the Kansas City Curriculum, Kansas City, said, “Of course, we parents were worried that maybe they were struggling with their students at home with something or feeling that they had lost standards.” District public schools, he said.

He adds that because of these concerns, schools have additional support in place.

“As far as Kovid is concerned, we have definitely developed a plan for a solid summer school that we have developed this summer,” Swan said. “We were also engaged during the day by outside tutoring companies to make sure we did nothing to stop us from working with all the students.”

Swan says if you are worried about your child, contact their teacher to see if there is much to be done at school and beyond.

He adds that many schools have changed their approach to the real purpose of each child’s individual needs and recognize that not all children learn the same.

“As classroom teachers, we always help our students figure out what the right strategy is for you and what is the right way of teaching for you,” Swan said.

For Rosemary, these days her mother is pleased with her progress and the credit she has received for her purposeful approach and the help of Silver City teachers to get her six-year-old child back.


We would like to hear from you about what resources Kansas City families can use to help us during the pandemic. If you have five minutes, feel free to fill out this questionnaire to help guide our coverage: KSHB COVID research.

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