Road to COVID Recovery


Dan Goldhaber, Thomas J. Kane, Andrew McEachin, Emily Morton, Tyler Patterson, and Douglas O. Staiger 

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Using testing data from 2.1 million students in 10,000 schools in 49 states (plus D.C.), we investigate the role of remote and hybrid instruction in widening gaps in achievement by race and school poverty. We find that remote instruction was a primary driver of widening achievement gaps. Math gaps did not widen in areas that remained in-person (although there was some widening in reading gaps in those areas). We estimate that high-poverty districts that went remote in 2020-21 will need to spend nearly all their federal aid on academic recovery to help students recover from pandemic-related achievement losses.



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About the Project

In the wake of instructional challenges faced over the past two school years, districts across the country are currently making important decisions about which interventions and strategies to implement to aid with COVID recovery. Understanding which interventions work best for students, and how to best implement them, is critical as we collectively move forward. Researchers from CEPR have partnered with colleagues at CALDER at the American Institutes for Research (AIR) and NWEA to uncover the impact of the pandemic on learning loss and work with a coalition of districts across the country to help determine which COVID recovery interventions are working (or not working) and why. The research group aims to maximize the potential of this research to practically inform each district’s recovery efforts, as well as offer insights to the larger field. 


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