Returning to School

Returning to school

(Photo by Ina FASSBENDER / AFP) (Photo by INA FASSBENDER/AFP via Getty Images)

We, as parents, teachers and guardians, have different views on returning to school in this current climate. Sending our children back to their year group bubbles has proved and is proving to be a challenging process for some.

 

Lockdown proved to be a tough time for a lot of children. Some revealed traumatic and harrowing times, a lot of uncertainty, even feeling like they were safer to stay inside.

Change inevitably affected how accessible pastoral support was at schools, and we had to rely on education over the internet through online meetings and lessons. So where to go from here to support those who need it most?

Grief

The pandemics impact on isolation for families and relatives of children exist on the platforms of COVID deaths or underlying conditions. During this time, people close to us may have been taken ill or hospitalised. It proved to be a challenging time for families and friends. Coping mechanisms for children and teens vary from sadness, withdrawing, anxiety and anger—lots of complicated feelings and emotions.

 Services

The importance of mental health resources would have been highly interrupted or indeed cancelled, as statistics revealed during the lockdown. Regarding providing support for teenagers and children who are particularly vulnerable, and are already experiencing mental and physical difficulties, this has inflicted a vast array of problems for accessing mental health organisations in an already stretched area of expertise for teens and children.

Uncertainty

The scale of uncertain times at home for children is not yet recorded. However, many teenagers and children entered lockdown in already challenging domestic environments: 

  • Neglect
  • Physical violence
  • Financial hardships
  • Malnourishment
  • Temporary and unstable accommodation
  • Anxiety

Change

Are they moving up a year? Going to school, college or university for the first time? Because these have not been smooth transitions either due to missing out on valuable education periods in the last six months. For anyone. Algerrhythms are altering grade boundaries. Some not in favour of pupil’s unconditional progression, especially in times like these. Causing many to rethink, resit and re-adjust to alternative options.

Anti-social behaviour and friendship circles

For many, social distancing has inflicted a strain of some degree on friendship groups and being able to meet up with peers. Social media has been the central platform of communication between friends; however, others haven’t been so fortunate. We tend to rely on our friends and peers for support and activities throughout life, not just when we are young. The impact of the pandemic is a common breeding ground for anti-social behaviour and bullying. Aka “Contagion.” Racism and inequality rise due to the origins of this contagious virus in China.

The outcome

Patience, understanding, and productive approaches to accommodate the mental and physical health of our children is required. Flexible policies and safeguarding our children are at an all-time high as this blog outlines, for the foreseeable future.

We all want to future proof the next generation the best we can… don’t we.

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