Learning inequality during the pandemic

27 April 2021

Nuffield Fellow Per Engzell, DPhil in Sociology Mark Verhagen and co-author Arun Frey use data from the Netherlands to evaluate the effect of primary school closures on student progress. They find a general learning loss across the dataset and that these losses are up to 55% larger in students from less-educated homes.

Per, Mark and Arun also wrote a summary of their findings for Population Europe ('How Do School Closures Affect Student Learning? It’s Worse Than You Think') and for VoxEU ('The collateral damage to children’s education during lockdown', 9 November 2020).

This research was also covered in The Economist (24 June 2021), The Daily Mail (14 April 2021), the Oxford Mail (14 April 2021), the Financial Times (7 March 2021 and 19 February 2021), The Economist (13 February 2021), and The New York Times (24 December 2020). The paper was also mentioned in the IMF's Fiscal Monitor for April 2021.

(Per Engzell, Mark Verhagen and Arun Frey, ‘Learning Loss Due to School Closures During the Covid-19 Pandemic’. Published in PNAS 108(17):e2022376118, doi: 10.1073/pnas.2022376118)