Caregiver decision-making on schooling/care for young children in the face of COVID-19: the influence of child, caregiver and systemic factors

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Child Youth Serv Rev. 2022 May;136:106437. doi: 10.1016/j.childyouth.2022.106437. Published online February 24, 2022.

ABSTRACT

In March 2020, US schools and daycares largely closed to manage the novel COVID-19 pandemic. As the country struggled to reopen the economy, American parents had to make difficult decisions about returning to work and the schooling and care of their young children. During the summer and fall of 2020, caregivers (NOT = 1655) children (NOT = 2408; 0 to 12 years old) completed questionnaires assessing their decision-making process regarding the custody or schooling situation of their children. A mixed method approach (ie qualitative and quantitative assessments) was used. The results indicated three main themes that impacted caregiver choices: child-related factors, caregiver-related factors, and systemic factors. Caregivers experienced high levels of stress while worrying about their child and family’s health, job responsibilities and the risk of COVID-19 infection rates in their area. Ongoing assessment of families and children during this time is warranted.

PMID:35228767 | PMC:PMC8868013 | DOI:10.1016/j.childyouth.2022.106437

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