Millions of children in Ontario are affected by COVID-19-related school closures, but we don’t yet know the extent of the impacts.
Schools serve as the epicenter of children’s learning, development, and emotional as well as social well-being. Schools can also act as important access points for children facing barriers to health care. How will school closures affect children’s mental health and development?
The purpose of this study is to learn about children’s and families’ experiences during and following the COVID-19 pandemic, and to develop the right programs to support their mental health and well-being in this new reality.
We will use the results to develop and evaluate new, targeted programs to be delivered by the Model Schools Pediatric Health Initiative. This innovative initiative brings developmental and mental-health care to more than 2,000 children in 50 inner-city schools. Our goal is to scale our programs and learnings to other community pediatric clinics across Toronto and Ontario.