Bismarck childcare workers are challenged with ‘COVID Kids’

Published: Nov. 29, 2022 at 8:10 PM CST
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - When daycares and schools closed their doors during the pandemic, there was one group of kids that didn’t get the chance to see what they were missing because the lockdown was all they knew. “COVID Kids,” or kids born during the pandemic, are showing developmental differences.

KinderKidz Bismarck is just one daycare where the directors have noticed changes in the “COVID Kids” as compared to other years. Whether they were quarantined for two years or two weeks, the employees have noticed.

“They’ll be quarantined for two weeks and then come back, and their behavior is very challenging. I also notice that they don’t really participate in the classroom activities because they’re so used to just being quarantined,” said Jordan Casson, director.

They say it isn’t just delays in learning, but troubling behaviors tend to pick up.

“The ones that have been in quarantine, some of them are a little more aggressive. They bite, they hit. They’re not very sociable. They don’t know how to interact with the other kids, which is unfortunate,” said Susie Bosch, assistant director.

The directors are worried that the quarantine period has affected some of the kids long term.

“I notice that their education is lacking. Them being quarantined for so long, they have no idea how to write their name, how to count, how to do their letters, their colors. I feel like their education is really like taking a fall,” said Casson.

The daycare workers are now trying to re-teach some of those skills.

“We’ve been working with conscious discipline, positive discipline, and trying to go over all of our past teachings and learnings that we’ve tried,” said Bosch

On top of the challenges they face, KinderKidz is just one childcare center that is experiencing extreme staff shortages, which means they sometimes need to send kids home.

NBC News reports babies born during quarantine lockdowns have taken longer to meet important developmental milestones, especially socialization ones.