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Children and COVID-19 Research Library

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

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Pooled RT-qPCR testing for SARS-CoV-2 surveillance in schools - a cluster randomised trial

AUTHOR(S)
Alexander Joachim; Felix Dewald; Isabelle Suárez (et al.)

Published: September 2021   Journal: EClinicalMedicine

The extent to which children and adolescents contribute to SARS-CoV-2 transmission remains not fully understood. Novel high-capacity testing methods may provide real-time epidemiological data in educational settings helping to establish a rational approach to prevent and minimize SARS-CoV-2 transmission. This study investigated whether pooling of samples for SARS-CoV-2 detection by RT-qPCR is a sensitive and feasible high-capacity diagnostic strategy for surveillance of SARS-CoV-2 infections in schools. In this study, students and school staff of 14 educational facilities in Germany were tested sequentially between November 9 and December 23, 2020, two or three times per week for at least three consecutive weeks. Participants were randomized for evaluation of two different age adjusted swab sampling methods (oropharyngeal swabs or buccal swabs compared to saliva swabs using a ‘lolli method’).

Disinfectant use by K-12 school staff to combat SARS-CoV-2

AUTHOR(S)
Timothy J. Hilbert; Candace Brancato; Kelsey Carter (et al.)

Published: August 2021   Journal: American Journal of Infection Control
K-12 school staff from Indiana, Kentucky, and Ohio were asked about their use of disinfectants to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in schools. Survey participants (n=1,555) reported frequent use of disinfectants, often using unknown products, and were provided little to no training on safe and effective use. Participant concerns included student involvement in disinfection, inadequate ventilation, surface contact time, and potential health effects.
Reopening with Resilience: Lessons from remote learning during COVID19

The COVID-19 pandemic led to school closures around the world, affecting almost 1.6 billion students. The effects of even short disruptions in a child’s schooling on their learning and well-being have been shown to be acute and long lasting. The capacities of education systems to respond to the crisis by delivering remote learning and support to children and families have been diverse yet uneven.

This report reviews the emerging evidence on remote learning throughout the global school closures during the COVID-19 pandemic to help guide decision-makers to build more effective, sustainable, and resilient education systems for current and future crises.

Family–school partnerships in the age of Covid-19: reasons for optimism amidst a global pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Chris Jones; Colin Forster

Published: May 2021   Journal: Contemporary Issues in Practitioner Education
This article reports on research undertaken in May and June 2020, during the initial phase of the Covid-19 pandemic when schools in England were still closed to the majority of children. The research sought to explore the impact of the so-called ‘lockdown’ on family–school partnerships. Research shows such partnerships make an important contribution to the effective education of children and young people, potentially leading to improved behaviour, engagement and learning outcomes. The study was conducted as a short online survey, circulated through social media and email, which invited teachers, school leaders and others working in primary and secondary schools to share their experiences of family–school partnership during this time. Analysis of the data showed that schools had made considerable efforts to maintain communication and support for all families, particularly those deemed ‘hard-to-reach’, and many participants reported that family–school partnerships had actually been strengthened through this testing period of time.
Evaluation of the Abbott BinaxNOW rapid antigen test for SARS-CoV-2 infection in children: Implications for screening in a school setting

AUTHOR(S)
Neeraj Sood; Rashmi Shetgiri; Anna Rodriguez (et al.)

Published: April 2021   Journal: Plos One
Rapid antigen tests hold much promise for use in the school environment. However, the performance of these tests in non-clinical settings and among one of the main target populations in schools—asymptomatic children—is unclear. To address this gap, we examined the positive and negative concordance between the BinaxNOW™ rapid SARS-CoV-2 antigen assay and an RT-PCR test among children at a community-based Covid-19 testing site.
Cite this research | Open access | No. of pages: 8 | Language: English | Topics: Health | Tags: child health, COVID-19, health services, infectious disease, schools | Countries: United States
COVID-19: are school counseling services ready? students' psychological symptoms, school counselors' Views, and solutions

AUTHOR(S)
Mehmet Akif Karaman; Hasan Esici; Ismail Hakkı Tomar (et al.)

Published: March 2021   Journal: Frontiers in Psychology
The purpose of the current study was to investigate the effects of COVID-19 on high school students’ psychological symptoms and to understand how ready counselors and school counseling services are based on the data we have. Therefore, this research is designed under two different studies: (A) Study 1: Effects of COVID-19 pandemic on students’ psychological symptoms and (B) Study 2: Views and expectations of students and school counselors about school counseling services.
Lifting Barriers to Education During and After COVID-19: Improving education outcomes for migrant and refugee children in Latin America and the Caribbean

By the end of 2019, 4.8 million refugees and migrants had left Venezuela – making it the largest external displacement crisis in the region’s recent history. Of these, 1 in 4 was a child.

Across Latin America and the Caribbean, since November 2020, 137 million girls and boys are missing out on their education due to the prolonged closure of schools during COVID-19. The implications are troubling, especially for migrant and refugee children, for whom access to inclusive and equitable education remains a major challenge.

This study collates evidence from Latin America, the Caribbean and across the world to gain a better understanding of the multifaceted linkages between education and migration. It estimates gaps in educational outcomes; identifies structural barriers to education; and highlights promising practices to inform policy.

Lifting Barriers to Education During and After COVID-19: Improving education outcomes for migrant and refugee children in Latin America and the Caribbean

By the end of 2019, 4.8 million refugees and migrants had left Venezuela – making it the largest external displacement crisis in the region’s recent history. Of these, 1 in 4 was a child.

Across Latin America and the Caribbean, since November 2020, 137 million girls and boys are missing out on their education due to the prolonged closure of schools during COVID-19. The implications are troubling, especially for migrant and refugee children, for whom access to inclusive and equitable education remains a major challenge.

This study collates evidence from Latin America, the Caribbean and across the world to gain a better understanding of the multifaceted linkages between education and migration. It estimates gaps in educational outcomes; identifies structural barriers to education; and highlights promising practices to inform policy.

Measures implemented in the school setting to contain the COVID‐19 pandemic: a rapid scoping review

AUTHOR(S)
Shari Krishnaratne; Lisa M. Pfadenhauer; Michaela Coenen (et al.)

Published: December 2020

In response to the spread of SARS‐CoV‐2 and the impact of COVID‐19, national and subnational governments implemented a variety of measures in order to control the spread of the virus and the associated disease. While these measures were imposed with the intention of controlling the pandemic, they were also associated with severe psychosocial, societal, and economic implications on a societal level. One setting affected heavily by these measures is the school setting. By mid‐April 2020, 192 countries had closed schools, affecting more than 90% of the world’s student population. In consideration of the adverse consequences of school closures, many countries around the world reopened their schools in the months after the initial closures. To safely reopen schools and keep them open, governments implemented a broad range of measures. The evidence with regards to these measures, however, is heterogeneous, with a multitude of study designs, populations, settings, interventions and outcomes being assessed. To make sense of this heterogeneity, we conducted a rapid scoping review (8 October to 5 November 2020). This rapid scoping review is intended to serve as a precursor to a systematic review of effectiveness, which will inform guidelines issued by the World Health Organization (WHO). 

On the effect of age on the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 in households, schools and the community

AUTHOR(S)
Edward Goldstein; Marc Lipsitch; Muge Cevik

Published: October 2020   Journal: The Journal of Infectious Diseases

There is limited information on the effect of age on the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 infection in different settings. This research reviewed published studies/data on detection of SARS-CoV-2 infection in contacts of COVID-19 cases, serological studies, and studies of infections in schools.

Cite this research | Open access | No. of pages: 8 | Language: English | Topics: Health | Tags: child health, COVID-19, disease transmission, schools
A new generation: 25 years of efforts for gender equality in education
Institution: UNESCO - Global Education Monitoring Report Team
Published: October 2020
Over the past 25 years girls' access to education has dramatically improved. However, girls, particularly those with intersecting disadvantages in terms of poverty or disability, still face the worst forms of acute exclusion in world's poorest countries. Education is a critical lever for women's rights. The potential increase in early pregnancy is likely to be a result of increased early marriages, a consequence of households being plunged deeper into poverty due to the pandemic.
COVID-19 trends among school-aged children — United States, March 1–September 19, 2020

AUTHOR(S)
Rebecca T. Leeb; Sandy Price; Sarah Sliwa (et al.)

Published: October 2020   Journal: Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report

Children aged <10 years can transmit SARS-CoV-2 in school settings, but less is known about COVID-19 incidence, characteristics, and health outcomes among school-aged children (aged 5–17 years) with COVID-19. Since March, 277,285 COVID-19 cases in children have been reported. COVID-19 incidence among adolescents aged 12–17 years was approximately twice that in children aged 5–11 years. Underlying conditions were more common among school-aged children with severe outcomes related to COVID-19. Weekly incidence, SARS-CoV-2 test volume, and percentage of tests positive among school-aged children varied over time and by region of the United States. It is important for schools and communities to monitor multiple indicators of COVID-19 among school-aged children and layer prevention strategies to reduce COVID-19 disease risk for students, teachers, school staff, and families. These results can provide a baseline for monitoring trends and evaluating mitigation strategies.

Cite this research | Vol.: 69 | No. of pages: 1410-1415 | Language: English | Topics: Health | Tags: child health, COVID-19, disease control, disease transmission, schools | Countries: United States
Detection and reporting potential child and youth victimization cases from school: the role of knowledge

AUTHOR(S)
Ana M. Greco; Noemí Pereda; Georgina Guilera

Published: September 2020   Journal: Children and Youth Services Review
Knowledge of child victimization among school staff is believed to affect the detection and reporting of potential cases in the school environment, but the current evidence is scarce and contradictory. Interventions should aim to provide more detailed and concrete information about reporting procedures and to explore ways of recreating the experience of detecting and reporting, particularly in a context in which detection procedures may have to be carried out online due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This would help to overcome fears and barriers to identifying children at risk and to notifying the corresponding authorities about their situation.
Increased proportion of physical child abuse injuries at a level I pediatric trauma center during the Covid-19 pandemic

AUTHOR(S)
Mark L. Kovler; Susan Ziegfeld; Leticia M. Ryan (et al.)

Published: September 2020   Journal: Child Abuse & Neglect
The Covid-19 pandemic has forced mass closures of childcare facilities and  schools. While these measures are  necessary to  slow  virus transmission, little is  known regarding the secondary health consequences of social distancing. The purpose of this study is to assess the proportion of injuries secondary to physical child abuse (PCA) at a level I pediatric trauma center during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Objectives for COVID-19 testing in school settings
Institution: European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control
Published: August 2020
The aim of this document is to provide an overview of major aspects of testing, contact tracing, contact identification and contact follow-up in school settings within the EU/EEA countries and the United Kingdom (UK).
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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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COVID-19 & Children: Rapid Research Response

UNICEF Innocenti is mobilizing a rapid research response in line with UNICEF’s global response to the COVID-19 crisis. The initiatives we’ve begun will provide the broad range of evidence needed to inform our work to scale up rapid assessment, develop urgent mitigating strategies in programming and advocacy, and preparation of interventions to respond to the medium and longer-term consequences of the COVID-19 crisis. The research projects cover a rapid review of evidence, education analysis, and social and economic policies.