A new survey of teens conducted for Junior Achievement by the research firm Engine Insights shows that nearly two in five, or 39%, feel that they are behind educationally because of the pandemic. Of those, more than a third (37%) feel they are behind permanently. The survey also found that in addition to attending school in-person and interacting with other students and teachings, many teens (34%) need “emotional support” from teachers, parents, counselors and other caring adults to help their “mental well-being,” as well as more individual attention from teachers (32%) to help with their learning. The 2021 survey of 1,003 13- to 17-year-olds was conducted by Engine Insights July 8-13, 2021.
“These results indicate that the pandemic may have a profound and long-term impact on today’s young people, not just academically, but emotionally,” said Joseph C. Burke, president of Junior Achievement of Southeast Texas. “It’s up to all of us, educators, parents, caregivers, counselors, mentors and youth development professionals, to do what we can this school year and beyond to give young people the support they need.”
Other findings from the survey include:
A third of teens (34%) have concerns about attending school in-person this year, compared to two-thirds (66%) who have little to no concerns.
COVID-19 impacted the way education was delivered for nearly all students. Most teens (56%) rated the quality of education during the pandemic as “fair/poor,” while the rest (44%) rated it as “excellent/very good/good.”
Teen interest in participating in online-only classes in the future was split down the middle, with nearly half interested (46%) and almost half not (48%).