When life as we knew it came to a grinding halt last March, schools were expected to reopen in a mere two weeks. Instead, pupils have missed months of their education. Children are missing out on large parts of their childhood, and we can’t let them be swept aside as a result of the pandemic.
Covid-19 has been ruthless in affecting all aspects of our lives. With the UK surpassing 100,000 deaths this week, the harsh extent of the power of this virus was laid bare. And whilst every single death from this deadly disease is a tragedy, we must not forget those who suffer in other ways.
Covid has not just ended lives literally, but metaphorically too, and the impacts have been felt by most.
Children have missed out on months of valuable teaching, a level students were left high and dry last summer and mental health services are buckling.
Children are meant to be outside playing. Instead, screen time is at an all time high, alongside soaring mental health problems, and kids don’t see much more outside of the living room and kitchen.
The truth is that children have missed out on months of valuable teaching, A level students were left high and dry last summer, and mental health services are buckling.
We must not let children suffer just because we don’t see fatalities in this age group. We need to look after our youth and help them through this tough time – the evidence is there from experts that this simply has not happened.
Ann Longfield, the Children’s Commissioner, has today warned that mental health services simply do not have the capacity to cope with the impact of the pandemic on children.
Now is the time for a coherent and structured plan to help our children through a time where their childhoods are being stolen from them in front of their eyes.