Inequalities in Student Learning and Screen Time Due to COVID-19: Evidence from Japan

Author Name NISHIHATA Masaya (Mitsubishi UFJ Research and Consulting) / KOBAYASHI Yohei (Consulting Fellow, RIETI)
Creation Date/NO. November 2022 22-E-107
Research Project Implementing Evidence-Based Policy Making in Japan
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We examine the impact of COVID-19-related school closures on student learning and screen time. We find that between January 2020 (pre-COVID-19) and May 2020, as the length of a COVID-19-related school closure increased, there was a decrease in learning time and an increase in screen time. These adverse effects tend to be more pronounced for students in low-income households, low academic achievers, and elementary school students living in single-parent households. Moreover, the increase in screen time may have persisted until January 2021 for elementary school students in single-parent households. On average, while live online classes mitigated the effects of decreased learning time for junior high school students, that effect is not found for low academic achievers.