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A new report has been published by the Department for Education (DfE) looking into learning and wellbeing of 16-19 year olds during the Covid-19 pandemic. Our team at Family Kids & Youth carried out the research at the end of last year. Using the ONS ‘Index of Multiple Deprivation’, paired interviews were carried out with 16-19 year olds in deprived areas in England (Middlesbrough, Sheffield, Leeds, and Manchester). The research explored young people’s experience of learning during this time, which included the educational recovery support that they had access to, as well as how this was implemented. Many young people had found online learning a challenge for several reasons, including a disruptive home environment, a lack of practical learning and resources as well as difficulty with accessing online materials. The issue for some students was a shortage of digital devices, even when these were provided by their school. Outside of educational achievement, the mental health of these young people was also impacted by the change to their learning environment. Many mentioned that not physically attending school restricted their routine of socialising with friends and demotivated them from completing work assignments. Additionally, young people explained that not attending school had prevented them from taking part in traditional milestones that previous year groups had been able to enjoy. The full report can be read here.

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