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Parents report kids are falling behind, not ready to move on to the next grade level

Results show an average of 15 hours a week of direct instruction

The true long-term impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the education of our children will not be evident for quite some time. We currently lack accurate measurements of student learning or progress, and it may take years for the societal impact to be felt. Parents fear that they will not be able to deliver on their desire to provide their children a better life than they had. At TEN, we share in the calls to better support our students as we attempt to mitigate learning loss, support social emotional needs and build long term solutions for a generation of students who have fallen behind during the COVID 19 Pandemic.

Over the last year, parents have served as the primary educators for their children. They are a critical partner with a wealth of knowledge, understanding and insight into the effects of remote learning. They must be consulted and honored by policy makers as they take steps to try to return to a sense of normalcy. Now more than ever their perspective is invaluable as they have served on the front lines of education. The future of Colorado and the education of hundreds of thousands of Colorado children are at stake.

With this in mind, we set out to conduct a broad survey of Colorado parents to provide context and insight for policymakers. Over 500 Colorado families completed the survey between mid-December through mid-January. TEN Parent Fellows conducted hundreds of phone calls and hundreds more completed the survey online. While not a randomized survey, it has broad appeal and input. A deeper report will come in the near future, but this provides an early glimpse at high level takeaways.

The Survey:

  • Respondents represent at least 48 different Colorado communities (Denver Metro represents approximately 80% of respondents).

  • 49% represent families who are eligible for the free-and-reduced-price lunch program (41% of the state qualifies)

  • 47% of respondents stated they are white, 34% Latino, and 8% black compared to 53%, 34% and 4%, respectively, in Colorado’s K-12 student population

Calls to Action:

  • Schools and districts must measure and communicate student progress to parents, who have an urgent desire to understand whether their child is prepared to move to the next grade level.

  • School systems should adapt creative solutions to mitigate learning loss, including funding expanded learning opportunities, high intensity tutoring and social emotional support and student wellness programming.

  • Districts should adopt quality indicators and time requirements for the remainder of remote learning.


Key Takeaways

Parents report that their students are receiving an average of 15 hours a week of live instruction during remote learning. About half the time that they would receive under normal circumstances

Families remain concerned about the impact of Covid.

54% believe that their child has fallen behind academically during Covid

There is significant uneasiness about what comes next. Only 52% are confident that their children are prepared to advance to the next grade level.

The pandemic and remote learning has also created a financial burden on families. We asked parents about out of pocket educational expenses due to the pandemic, The amount spent varied of course but early analysis shows an average cost of $1,514 per family since March 2020.


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