Claire joined the Department of Economics at Birmingham Business School as a Reader in Economics in July 2018. Prior, she was an Assistant Professor of Economics at the University of Warwick, starting in January 2014.
Claire started her career at the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS). She remains a Research Fellow of the IFS and is also an Associate of the Centre for Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE) at Warwick and a member of the National Audit Office-University of Birmingham tax centre.
Title: The impact of school closures on children’s wellbeing
Abstract: The effects of the covid-19 pandemic on mental health, especially amongst children, are receiving increasing attention. What is less clear are the channels through which these effects are operating. This paper helps fill this gap by isolating the impact of school closures on children’s mental health. We exploit the way in which primary school children were invited to return to school in England in the summer term of 2020, with government advice being that all children in reception, Year 1 and Year 6 should be invited to return from 1 June, while only vulnerable children and children of key workers could attend in Years 2, 3, 4 and 5. We adopt a difference-in-differences approach with child fixed effects, comparing changes over time (before the pandemic to July 2020) between children who were and were not invited to return to school using parent reports from the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ). Using reports from September 2020 – when all children had been invited to return school – we can also explore the extent to which these effects persist.
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