A survey carried out by the Lemann Foundation in partnership with the Instituto Natura showed that 94% of children and adolescents had some behavior change during the pandemic. According to parents and guardians, 56% gained weight, 44% felt sad, 38% became more afraid and 34% lost interest in school.
The survey “Where and how are children and adolescents while schools are closed?” indicated that among those who are alone at home, the rates of those who sleep more, were quieter or have more difficulty sleeping are higher.
When the children and adolescents from families with lower incomes were evaluated, up to two minimum wages, 59% gained weight, 51% began to sleep more, 48% became more restless, 46% were sadder, and 35% lost interest in school.
The survey heard 1315 people responsible for more than 2,100 children and adolescents (4 to 18 years old) enrolled in the public network or out of school, from all over Brazil, between June 16 and July 7, 2021. The study also interviewed 218 young people between 10 and 15 years old.
When evaluating food security, 34% of the families said that the amount of food was less than enough, especially for families in the Northeast (46%) and the South (18%).
Among those who reported insufficient food, 63% are black and brown, 63% of families earn up to the minimum wage and 66% said that someone in the household lost their job or income in the pandemic.
The survey also showed that children’s and teens’ meals were better before the pandemic: 81% of parents said they were great or good before the covid-19 outbreak, a rate that dropped to 74%. Among those who consider regular food, the rate increased from 16% to 23%; and the bad remained stable at 2%.
More time in electronics
According to the survey, 10% of children and young people spend the day at other people’s homes, half of them at their grandparents’ homes. Of the 90% who stay in the house of their guardians (father, mother, stepmother and/or stepfather), 14% remain alone in the place or only with siblings, without responsible adults.
The survey also showed that the routine of activities at home has changed: 37% of children and teenagers are playing video games or cell phones more often than before covid-19 and 43% have increased their TV hours.
Another important fact showed that 6% of young people between 7 and 18 years old are working, with a higher percentage among blacks (10%). Of the total number of young people working, 60% started in 2021 and 74% are boys. The average age is 16 years old, with 9% between 11 and 14 years old, 68% between 15 and 17 years old and 23% are 18 years old.
Among the children and teenagers interviewed, 75% said they miss classroom classes or a teacher, and 60% miss socializing and friends. Those who believe their future will be harmed by the pandemic are 66%. At least 40% dreamed of professions before the pandemic and now this percentage is 37%. For 17%, the main dream now is that the pandemic ends.
“This shows the role of the school and this environment in the lives of these children and adolescents. Of course, it is a space for expanding repertoire and learning, but it is also a space for socializing and personal development, in addition to being, for many, a space for eating and drinking. This sheds a lot of light on the role of the school and the face-to-face feedback from classes,” said Instituto Natura manager Maria Slemenson, who deals with the articulation of priority education agendas.
The survey showed that 3% of children and adolescents are not enrolled in school. Of these, 32% said they were not at school because of the pandemic and another 32% said they could not find a place in the public school system. In addition, 62% of out-of-school children are between 4 and 6 years old. The students who are doing the assigned tasks are 92%, with 89% of parents saying they follow the activities done by children and teenagers at school and in online classes.
“We, at the Lemann Foundation, believe that quality public education changes people’s lives and they are the ones who can transform our country. Since the beginning of the pandemic, we have been working to support educational networks with studies, data, good practices and various guidelines so that each network can resume classroom classes and ensure that everyone can learn with quality, in the most varied realities of the country. ”, said the coordinator of Education projects at the Lemann Foundation, Barbara Panseri.
“We know the size of the inequalities in our country, we know that children and teenagers with lower income, from the Northeast and blacks and blacks, have less access to quality internet, and that remote education has increased the inequalities of our students”, added Barbara .
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