Is back to school your worst nightmare or greatest resilience?

While sending our kids back hasn’t been the freshest start, it’s an opportunity to remember what’s most important.

While back to school was looking bright just a few weeks ago, it seems we’ve opened up pandora’s box once again.

What’s been unleashed? A massive headache and some other hard truths, really (North Carolina, we’re sending you extra love and hugs this week).

The short term is bleak, yet bearable. For one, the dizzying debate “to mask or not to mask kids in school” has an end in sight. Fingers crossed. Scientists have drawn a clear line in the sand around the basics of in-school transmission prevention, giving us much needed headspace to grapple with even more troubling things like…

Two words: Missed. Learning.

Somehow these words get lost in the daily headline shuffle. In this last year, “between 1 and 3 million students were ‘lost’ by schools. They never enrolled, showed up, or logged in.”

The domino effect on academic performance is clear. But the bigger questions around missed learning’s impact on our kids’ emotional and mental health is beginning to emerge…with far fewer answers.

Like this startling reality. “From pooled studies from across the globe, [we] found clinically elevated depression in 25 percent of children and adolescents, and anxiety in 20 percent…double the usual estimates for children of between 11 and 13 percent.”

Apparently, back to school wasn’t the freshest start we’d hoped for.

But, it’s not all doom and gloom. Let’s not forget our common denominator in all this craziness. We want our kids safe, healthy and resourced to thrive through it all. Crisis breeds resilience, and there’s always room for more.

Written by Tiffany Wen

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