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1st grade students of Rose Hill Elementary in Commerce City, Colorado, in January. Photo: Hyoung Chang/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images

Daily school attendance in some districts across the U.S. has dropped by an average of 2.3% this academic year compared to 2019, according to data from PowerSchool, a company that helps track grades and attendance, reviewed by the Wall Street Journal.

Why it matters: The attendance drop contributes to fears that the pandemic may worsen pre-pandemic academic achievement goals and the long-term well-being of the U.S. economy.

By the numbers: PowerSchool's data covers 2,700 districts that include more than 2.5 million students learning in person and online.

  • PowerSchool's data indicated that attendance plunged in 75% of the districts from September to November 2020, dropping by 1.5% on average each month.

The big picture: Data from some states and school districts show that students learning remotely were attending school less often compared to their in-school classmates, according to WSJ.

Go deeper: Private schools pull students away from public schools

Go deeper

Florida's plan to address students' "COVID slide"

Illustration: Brendan Lynch/Axios

A bill racing through the Florida Senate would allow elementary and middle school students to repeat a grade next year if their learning has suffered during the pandemic, the Tampa Bay Times/Miami Herald's Ana Ceballos reports.

Why it matters: Evidence is mounting that the "COVID slide" is real and troubling.

Biden extends mask mandates for travelers into 2022

President Biden delivers remarks at the White House on Dec. 1. Photo: Anna Moneymaker via Getty Images

President Biden will announce new testing protocols for international travelers on Thursday and extend masking requirements through March as the U.S. prepares to fight the Omicron variant this winter, according to senior administration officials.

Driving the news: The U.S. will tighten pre-departure testing protocols starting early next week by requiring all inbound international travelers to take COVID-19 tests within one day of their departure rather than three.

51 mins ago - Health

America probably won't lead the effort to understand Omicron

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

The race to figure out just how dangerous the Omicron variant is will likely be a global effort, but some experts are skeptical that the U.S. will play a dominant role.

Why it matters: The CDC has repeatedly come under fire for inadequate data collection throughout the pandemic — and figuring out how to respond to Omicron requires a lot of data that doesn't currently exist.