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Learning loss and mental health impacts to linger following pandemic

Published: Oct. 19, 2021 at 5:15 PM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WDBJ) - Billions of dollars are flowing to Virginia schools in the wake of the pandemic. Tuesday morning, state lawmakers questioned whether the money will go where it’s needed the most.

Members of the Senate Finance Committee said recent testing reveals dramatic learning loss. And some said they believe leaders have underestimated the impact of the pandemic on students’ mental health.

“I see it with my kids. I see it with kids in Richmond. I hear it from counselors in Winchester and all parts of the state,” said Sen. Jennifer McClellan (D-Richmond). “The kids are not okay. And we need to understand that, and shift our investments earlier as quickly as possible.”

Virginia schools will receive more than three billion dollars in federal funds. Most of that is direct aid that comes with little or no state oversight.

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