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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

UNICEF Innocenti's curated library of COVID-19 + Children research

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A win-win for all of us: COVID-19 sheds light on the essentialness of child care as key infrastructure

AUTHOR(S)
Owusua Yamoah; Sarah Balser; Callie Ogland-Hand (et al.)

Published: January 2023   Journal: Early Childhood Research Quarterly
Child care centers in the United States allow many parents and caregivers to work in and outside of the home and support the growth and development of children. Child care closures and COVID-19 mitigation measures at the onset of the pandemic heightened the need for and awareness of the role of child care as core infrastructure. The purpose of this study was to examine the perceived role and benefits of child care based on the lived experiences of parents/caregivers and staff navigating child care during the pandemic. It conducted in-depth qualitative interviews with parents/caregivers (n = 20) of children who attended child care and staff (n = 12) who were working at child care programs in Ohio from September to November 2020. Qualitative data were coded and analyzed through the lens of four frameworks (i.e., capabilities, developmental, economics, and mutualism) related to child well-being.
Parental decision-making on summer program enrollment: a mixed methods Covid-19 impact study

AUTHOR(S)
Roddrick Dugger; Layton Reesor-Oyer; Michael W. Beets (et al.)

Published: January 2023   Journal: Evaluation and Program Planning

The closure of childcare organizations (e.g. schools, childcare centers, afterschool programs, summer camps) during the Covid-19 pandemic impacted the health and wellbeing of families. Despite their reopening, parents may be reluctant to enroll their children in summer programming. Knowledge of the beliefs that underlie parental concerns will inform best practices for organizations that serve children. Parents (n = 17) participated in qualitative interviews (October 2020) to discuss Covid-19 risk perceptions and summer program enrollment intentions. Based on interview responses to perceived Covid-19 risk, two groups emerged for analysis- “Elevated Risk (ER)” and “Conditional Risk (CR)”. Themes were identified utilizing independent coding and constant-comparison analysis. Follow-up interviews (n = 12) in the Spring of 2021 evaluated the impact of vaccine availability on parent risk perceptions. Additionally, parents (n = 17) completed the Covid-19 Impact survey to assess perceived exposure (Range: 0–25) and household impact (Range: 2–60) of the pandemic. Scores were summed and averaged for the sample and by risk classification group.

Provision of mother's own milk for preterm infants during the COVID-19 pandemic: differential effect of insurance

AUTHOR(S)
Lauren E. Boudreau; Betty R. Vohr; Richard Tucker (et al.)

Published: December 2022   Journal: Frontiers in Pediatrics
Mother-infant dyads faced many challenges during the COVID-19 pandemic; however, the impact was different depending on socio-economic determinants. This study aims to investigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on maternal provision of mother's own milk (MOM) at neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) discharge among preterm infants. It hypothesized that fewer infants would be discharged home on any MOM during the pandemic period compared to a pre-pandemic period. This is a retrospective analysis of infants born <34 weeks' gestation admitted to the Women and Infant's Hospital NICU. Infants born pre-pandemic (1/1/2019 to 2/29/2020) were compared to infants born during the pandemic (3/1/2020 to 4/30/2021). Maternal and neonatal variables were analyzed by group.
Visualizing mental health through the lens of Pittsburgh youth: a collaborative filmmaking study during COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Sara E. Baumann; Brayden N. Kameg; Jessica G. Burke (et al.)

Published: December 2022   Journal: Health Promotion Practice
Youth mental health has been significantly impacted by COVID-19, with concerns of rising anxiety-related and depressive symptoms and reduced quality of life. This study provides a nuanced understanding of mental health stressors and supports in the lives of youth during the pandemic. Using Collaborative Filmmaking, an embodied, visual, and participatory research method, participants in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, were trained to create, analyze, and screen films about mental health. The films elucidated numerous stressors impacting youth mental health, including educational stressors (e.g., academic pressure and relationships with teachers), personal and social stressors (e.g., social and cultural expectations), and current events (e.g., the election and the political system). Supports included individual level supports (e.g., hobbies, self-care, spending time outdoors), and interpersonal level supports (e.g., family and socializing). Several themes were discussed as both stressors and supports, such as family, COVID-19, and social media.
Parental perceptions related to co-administration of adolescent COVID-19 and routine vaccines

AUTHOR(S)
Courtney A. Gidengil; Andrew M. Parker; Amber M. Gedlinske (et al.)

Published: December 2022
Vaccinating adolescents against COVID-19 while avoiding delays in other routine vaccination is paramount to protecting their health. Our objective was to assess parental preferences to have their adolescents aged 12–17 years receive COVID-19 and other routine vaccines at the same time. An online survey with a national, quota-based cross-sectional sample of United States parents of youth aged 12–17 years was fielded in April 2021 ahead of FDA's Emergency Use Authorization of COVID-19 vaccine for age 12–15 years. Parents were asked about their willingness to have their adolescents aged 12–17 years receive both COVID-19 and routine vaccines at the same visit and/or to follow their provider's recommendation. Predictors included demographic characteristics, being behind on routine vaccines, and perceived risks and benefits.
The association of families' socioeconomic and demographic characteristics with parents' perceived barriers to returning to youth sport following the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Daniel J. M. Fleming; Travis E. Dorsch; Sarfaraz Serang (et al.)

Published: December 2022   Journal: Psychology of Sport and Exercise
Developmentally appropriate sport contexts have the potential to positively influence young people’s physiological, psychological, and social outcomes. However, little is known about how families returned to sport in the wake of COVID-19-related restrictions or how socioeconomic and demographic factors influenced parents’ perceptions of barriers to returning. A nationally representative sample (N = 6183) of American youth sport parents completed a questionnaire in which they provided demographic information and answered questions related to the barriers they perceived in returning to sport, such as the risk of their child getting sick. Structural equation modeling was used to examine the relationships among a range of socioeconomic and demographic factors and these barriers to returning.
Barriers and facilitators to comprehensive, school-based physical activity promotion for adolescents prior to and during the COVID-19 pandemic: a qualitative study

AUTHOR(S)
Ashleigh M. Johnson; Pooja S. Tandon; Kiana R. Hafferty (et al.)

Published: December 2022   Journal: Health Education Research
This study aimed to identify barriers and facilitators to comprehensive, school-based physical activity (PA) promotion among adolescents prior to and during the coronavirus disease of 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, considering the perspectives of students, parents, and school staff. Data were collected from 2020 to 2021 using semi-structured individual interviews with students (n = 15), parents (n = 20), and school staff (n = 8) at a Title I middle school (i.e. high percentage of students from low-income families). Two theoretical frameworks guided analysis: the Comprehensive School Physical Activity Program framework and Bronfenbrenner’s ecological systems theory. Using an iteratively developed codebook, data were coded, thematically analyzed, and synthesized. PA barriers and facilitators were present throughout the school day, at home, and in the community. Key determinants included pandemic-induced challenges (e.g. COVID-19 exposure); neighborhood characteristics/weather (e.g. neighborhood safety); school–family communication/collaboration; implementation climate (i.e. school staff’s support for programming); time, spatial, and monetary resources (e.g. funding); staffing capacity/continuity and school champions; staffing creativity and adaptability; PA opportunities before, during, and after school; and child’s motivation/engagement.
Persistent racial disproportionality in investigated and substantiated child maltreatment reports: trend analysis before and during the COVID-19 pandemic (2019–2020)

AUTHOR(S)
Keunhye Park; Bryan G. Victor; Brian E. Perron (et al.)

Published: December 2022   Journal: Journal of Public Child Welfare
Early studies revealed COVID-19ʹs outbreak led to a drastic decline in child maltreatment reports and investigations within child welfare services. However, limited research has documented whether these declines continued throughout the pandemic. Furthermore, our knowledge is limited around whether COVID-19 influenced existing racial disproportionalities given the shock to the child welfare system. This study addresses those gaps by drawing from county-level child welfare data from 2019 to 2020 to examine 1) changes in reporting sources before and during COVID-19, 2) trends in investigated and substantiated reports of child maltreatment, and 3) disproportionality between racial groups.
Parents' intentions and perceptions about COVID-19 vaccination for their children: results from a national survey

AUTHOR(S)
P. G. Szilagyi; M. D. Shah; J. R. Delgado (et al.)

Published: December 2022   Journal: Pediatrics

This study aimed to assess the likelihood of US parents to have their children receive a pediatric coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine and to understand parental concerns about the vaccines. Study participants were selected from The Understanding America Study (UAS), a nationally-representative online panel who were surveyed between February 17, 2021 and March 30, 2021. This was a survey-based study. Parents were asked about intent to have their child vaccinated against COVID-19, their perceptions about the vaccine, their own likelihood of getting a COVID-19 vaccine, whether their child previously received the flu vaccine, their trust in sources of information about a COVID-19 vaccine, and their trust in the vaccine development and approval process. Descriptive and multivariate analyses were used to assess likelihood of vaccination and to understand the association between likelihood of child vaccination and parent demographics, child age, and parental perceptions about COVID-19 vaccines.

Differences in traumatic stress among youth with and without chronic medical conditions during the COVID-19 pandemic.

AUTHOR(S)
J. K. Paternostro; A. Kakolu; W. Boyd (et al.)

Published: December 2022   Journal: Clinical Practice in Pediatric Psychology.
The COVID-19 pandemic is the deadliest pandemic in American history. This study aims to assess the differences in youth reported traumatic stress among those with and without chronic illness, and how those reports are impacted by parental level of concern regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. Using convenience sampling, parents and their children completed a series of questionnaires focused on demographic information including questions about medical conditions, parental level of concern about COVID-19, and youth-report of posttraumatic stress symptoms.
Mitigating rural adolescent trauma: remote delivery of a trauma-informed yoga intervention during COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Lauren Davis; Alexandra Aylward

Published: December 2022   Journal: Journal of Child & Adolescent Trauma
Given the prevalence of childhood trauma in rural Montana, this project is intended to help mitigate stressors that may contribute to poor behavioral and mental health in high school-aged children, which may be exacerbated by the collective trauma of the COVID-19 pandemic. The immediate goal was to measure physical and mental health outcomes in adolescents resulting from a remotely delivered trauma-informed yoga intervention designed to foster positive youth development. Our study builds on the successes from an initial feasibility pilot study one year prior in order to evaluate a more robust intervention comparing experimental and control group outcomes. Students at a small, rural high school in Montana volunteered to participate in a 6-week, twice-weekly trauma-informed yoga intervention in their physical education class.
Giving a lot of ourselves: How mother leaders in higher education experienced parenting and leading during the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Laura Boche

Published: December 2022   Journal: Frontiers in Education
This qualitative interpretative phenomenological analysis explored the lived experience of mother executive administrators in higher education during the COVID-19 pandemic. Utilizing the philosophical underpinnings of the Heideggerian phenomenological approach, the following research question guided this study: What are the lived experiences of mother executive administrators in higher education during the COVID-19 pandemic? Participants included nine self-identified mother executive administrators from one Midwest state at a variety of institution types and locations within the state. Data collection involved two focus groups and individual interviews with all nine participants. After data analysis, three recurrent themes emerged from the data: (1) Burnout and Exhaustion, (2) Never Enough: Responsibility Generated Feelings of Guilt, and (3) Receiving Support: Importance of Gender, Family Role, and Agency.
The category is "Pandemic queer": reading, connecting, and reimagining literacy with LGBTQ+ youth in the age of COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Shea Wesley Martin; Henry “Cody” Miller

Published: December 2022   Journal: Radical Teacher
The COVID-19 pandemic, coupled with the ensuing lockdown and political turmoil, ruptured many young people’s experiences and well-being, particularly students who face additional marginalization due to systemic oppression. A national survey conducted by the Trevor Project (2021) found that nearly 70% of LGBTQ youth noted that their health was “poor” most or all of the time during the COVID-19 pandemic. Factors contributing to this deterioration include LGBTQ youth being isolated from the supportive communities formed at school, lacking access to social services provided by schools, and being quarantined with family members who were unsupportive (Cohen, 2021; Valencia, 2020). These fissures in support and resource structures curtailed potentially affirming and integral education, social, and emotional experiences, particularly for LGBTQ youth who thrived in traditional schooling settings. However, it is also important to note that even prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, many schools were not idealized institutions for LGBTQ youth. K-12 schools, situated in the broader socio-political landscape of the United States, are bastions of homo-, trans-, and queerphobia (Mayo, 2014). Still, many LGBTQ young people employed resilience and ingenuity to create affirming and loving social circles, which were thus interrupted by restrictions, trauma, and isolation during the pandemic. This article details how  a community of readers who worked to analyze young adult literature was structured through intersectional and anti-oppressive lenses.
Preschoolers' parent and teacher/director perceptions of returning to early childcare education during the COVID-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Meg Bruening; Camila Nadalet; Nathan Ashok (et al.)

Published: December 2022   Journal: BMC Public Health

Early Care and Education (ECE) sites are critical hubs for social, emotional, and physical learning development of preschool children (ages 3–5). The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted ECE enrollment and participation; until June 2022, preschool children in the US were ineligible for COVID-19 vaccines. It is critical to identify perceptions of teachers/directors and parents to enhance safe return-to-school efforts. Focus groups (n = 7; 22 participants) were conducted with ECE teachers/directors throughout Arizona to examine perceptions of COVID-19 testing for families and staff at ECE sites, and current and possible COVID-19 mitigation strategies during Summer 2021. Preschool parents from underserved families in Phoenix (n = 41) completed a brief survey on their perceptions of benefits of ECE for themselves and their children, thoughts on COVID-19 mitigation strategies, and timing for safe return to school during Spring 2021. Focus groups were transcribed and analyzed for themes using constant comparison.

Children's engineering identity development within an at-home engineering program during COVID-19

AUTHOR(S)
Amber Simpson; Peter N. Knox

Published: December 2022   Journal: Journal of Pre-College Engineering Education Research
The culture of engineering and the culture of formal learning environments often make it difficult for individuals to develop an engineering identity. Conversely, recent research points to the home environment as an alternative setting to support disciplinespecific identity development of children, while less is known regarding the identity development of children as engineers. Therefore, the purpose of this study was to explore the development of children’s engineering identity through the co-creation of engineering concepts and engagement with engineering design thinking and processes with family members in home environments during the COVID-19 pandemic.
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UNICEF Innocenti's Children and COVID-19 Library is a database collecting research from around the world on COVID-19 and its impacts on children and adolescents.

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