No matter what's going on at home, schools have always been something of an equalizer — with all the neighborhood kids, richer and poorer, sitting behind the same desks in the same classrooms.
- Pandemic-era remote learning is doing away with that, Axios' Erica Pandey writes.
When you don't have kids from different backgrounds learning together, all of their differences become magnified — particularly when they can see into each other's homes, and especially when online learning shortchanges some students more than others.
- We didn't get the pandemic under control over the summer, and a number of school districts — including big ones like Los Angeles and Maryland's Montgomery County — have announced plans to go online for the fall.
Home conditions and family dynamics will be on display as kids attend classes over video calls.
- Socioeconomic differences among classmates are even more pronounced when everyone can see what the inside of everyone else's home looks like.
- And children who live in households steeped in pandemic chaos, where parents are too busy to get them ready for the day or set up their workstations, may show up for online school unkempt or in a messy environment.
For many young students, school was a safe space away from an unstable home.
- Millions of kids have lost family members to the virus, or worry about a parent who is an essential worker or lost their job.
- Food insecurity will also become a bigger issue.
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