ARKANSAS (KNWA/KFTA) — Some children aren’t showing up to class amid COVID-19.
The trend was first noticed during the 2020-2021 school year. A study by Bellwether Education Partners, with support from the Walton Family Foundation, found that about 600,000 students nationwide weren’t enrolled in school last year. Alex Spurrier, one of the authors of the report, said younger students tended to be the ones not going to school.
“They’re going to have some pretty substantial challenges moving forward for schools and educators and families to address because children are only five once and so being able to make up for that time of development both socially, academically, etc. will be really important,” Spurrier said.
The report was released Aug. 31, the same day Arkansas Secretary of Education, Johnny Key, reminded parents of the importance of enrolling children in class.
The report breaks down students during the 2020-2021 school year into three categories: The Movers, The Missed, the Muted. The children that did not show up to school at all are called ‘The Missed’ in the report.
Children who changed schools between the 2019-2020 school year and the 2020-2021 year are called ‘The Movers’ and that accounts for about 8.7 million students nationwide. Children of parents who were frustrated with their schooling option and lacked access to a different one are called ‘The Muted’ and make up about 1.5 million students in the country.