No Sports. No Band. No Fun. (And Less Learning?)

With COVID-19 curtailing extracurriculars like sports, fine arts, and special-interest clubs, student engagement suffers at all grade levels, experts say
(EWA Radio: Episode 254)

From basketball to band, debate club to dance teams, the coronavirus pandemic has curtailed extracurricular activities for many of the nation’s K-12 students. That could have a long-term impact on student enthusiasm for school overall, experts warn. Longtime education journalist Greg Toppo, writing for The 74, looks at how educators are working to keep kids connected to school, and the research showing a strong link between extracurricular participation and academic achievement. While COVID-19’s disruption of school sports gets a lot of attention, Toppo said  finding ways to continue fine arts programs is also of particular concern to parents as well as students. Also, Toppo discusses ways education journalists can avoid burnout on the daily grind of what’s become a pandemic-heavy beat. He also  shares story ideas on what’s ahead for education policy with President-elect Joe Biden preparing for office.

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