Why You Should Stop Worrying About Kids Being “So Far Behind…”

The pandemic is preparing kids for life beyond the classroom

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash

“Kids are so behind…”

You don’t have to be an educator or even a parent to have come across what has now become a popular refrain in America. “Kids are so far behind…” One study has even projected a loss of lifetime earning potential due to the COVID-slide.

The Research is Bleak

Various studies have documented the COVID-slide, the learning loss caused by the pandemic. Standardized tests show that students experienced setbacks in both reading and math, with deficiencies greatest in math. Some studies project that kids could be between one-half and one full year behind in math at the end of the 20–21 school year.

The Trouble with Standardized Tests

Tests are good at measuring one thing: performance. They show how well a student can answer the limited questions set forth on the test at a particular moment in time.

Arbitrary Benchmarks

Equally troubling is the idea that there is a particular benchmark that all kids should reach at the same time. These benchmarks do exist, in the form of common-core or state standards. But they are human constructs, not divine ordination.

Unreasonable Expectation of Normalcy

Life during a pandemic is not normal.

Let’s Give Kids A Little Credit

The bleak outlook for children and their future also depicts a level of despair that is tiresome. Yes, it has been a hard year. But better days our ahead.

Limited Criteria

Test scores only measure one aspect of children’s development. And frankly, in the modern world, that measure is becoming less and less important. You don’t need a college degree to be successful.

A Different Perspective

Our kids are not “so far behind.” They are leaps and bounds ahead in the areas that matter most. Technology, communication, flexibility, responsibility, and innovation. They are more compassionate and less selfish. They have learned not to take anything for granted.

Former lawyer, forever teacher and professional writer, Lisa writes about education, parenting and personal & professional growth. www.garnetghostwriting.com

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