NEW YORK, NY – According to CBSNews.com, citing studies conducted in the U.K., some children are displaying signs of emotional and developmental regression after months of strict restrictions means to stem the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic, leading to great concern among parents worldwide.
Reports from U.K. education watchdogs range from numerous impacts upon children’s ability to learn, such as forgetting basic life skills like how to use forks and knives while eating, early progress in words and numbers, or falling back into using diapers after having been successfully potty-trained. These issues and more are being tied into the pandemic and the subsequent school closures over the course of many months, and experts say it’s starting to take a very real toll.
The Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills (OFSTED) released five reports that were based on over 900 visits to schools and caregivers across England since September. Most affected by the pandemic in terms of leaning abilities were younger children who had just started to grasp basic life skills and, due to spending less time with both their parents and peers, had started to noticeably regress.
However, older children were also affected, with some experiencing struggles with math, reading comprehension, physical fitness, and depression, with the latter issue leading to incidents of self-harming behavior.
The report also noted that while most children have experienced these hardships, some had nonetheless continued to thrive due to various issues, including spending more significant quality time with their parents or caregivers.
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Schools in England originally closed down in March in response to the pandemic; they have since reopened for in-person learning as of September, although it is not yet known how quickly children who experienced regression during the closure are regaining lost ground.