Author: Dr Michaela James, Research Officer, The National Centre for Population Health & Wellbeing Research
Children need help to recover from the disruption COVID has brought to their schooling. Much of the focus – and government funding – has been on academic catch-up. Some schools are beginning to trial adding an hour to the school day.
But young people weren’t just missing out on study time during school closures. They also lost out on a physical activity, extracurricular activities, school meals and social interaction.
Working with colleagues, I surveyed more than 6,000 young people in Wales aged from eight to 25 from the school setting to higher education (including postgraduate students) between September 2020 and February 2021. We wanted to explore what young people felt had affected their wellbeing during the pandemic. The results showed, in particular, the importance of social interaction and mental health support.