Starting the School Year with COVID-19 Concerns

Parents Prepare for the Unexpected in Unprecedented Times

Among its many other ill effects, the coronavirus epidemic places a significant strain on school-age children’s education as well as parents’ tranquil and productive home life. The 2020/2021 school year is already underway and cities, counties and school districts across the state of California have all embraced a variety of distance and hybrid learning models to hamper the spread of COVID-19. 

NeuroZone specializes in treating individuals with neurodevelopmental delays, learning disabilities and behavioral issues—these issues have become all the more pressing in our current crisis. Read the NeuroZone blog to learn more about our integrated and targeted approach to overcoming academic deficits and behavioral issues.  

How Is the Coronavirus Reshaping Education in California? 

Ever since the Golden State’s first shelter-in-place orders went into effect back in the spring, parents have been left in the lurch. Schools were among the first institutions to close as COVID-19 cases grew. And so, parents have to find ways to support their children’s life-long learning around their own busy work schedules. In the Los Angeles area, schools have begun to reopen in a limited fashion this fall. Most statewide plans and districtwide measures have evolved to include remote learning strategies with some in-person instruction, depending on where you live and the current number of COVID-19 infections in your area.[1] 

How Do I Make Sure My Child Does Not Fall Behind?

NeuroZone is here to help you with tips, tricks and important information on distance learning in the time of COVID-19. We want to guide you and your young ones through the storm. Contact NeuroZone for a free consultation. Our executive director, Erin Badour, MS, CCC-SLP, enjoys meeting with clients and their families. Let her assess your kids’ educational issues related to coronavirus and beyond. She is excellent at crafting comprehensive strategies to improve the academic performance of struggling students. Contact us to learn more. Call (310) 821-3640 to schedule an appointment at our offices in West LA. 

What We Know About COVID-19 and Children 

COVID-19 and Children

Perhaps the most difficult aspect of the coronavirus’s impact on academics is the absence of good options. Parents know how important a comprehensive educational experience is for kids’ scholarly progress. For students, school is also an essential source of social-emotional support from peers and educators. But COVID-19 has pitted these interests against the interests of health and safety. Parents have been put into an unenviable position, to be sure. 

Here Is the Good News

The evidence so far shows that person-to-person transmission of COVID-19 among children is relatively limited. In most pediatric cases abroad, the child was actually infected by an adult family member. However, the risk of transmission does go up with longer periods of exposure.  The risk of getting COVID-19 is also influenced by the intensity of transmission in your community.

Additional Considerations 

Just as with adults, there are certain groups of children with additional risks worth considering. For instance, there are more COVID-19 cases reported among children with intellectual and developmental disabilities than those without.[2] Also, children with neurologic, genetic, metabolic conditions, or kids who have congenital heart disease might be more likely to contract COVID-19. For these children, parents and caregivers may need to take additional precautions with regard to school re-entry.   

To help you assess the risks to your child, your household and your community, we have provided a reflective, self-guided survey below.

Distance Learning Tips for Parents 

Distance Learning Tips for Parents

As parents, we love our children and want the best for them. But with very few exceptions, most parents are not ready to fill the role of a professionally trained educator in their child’s life. Distance learning leaves a lot to be desired when it comes to shepherding students through state educational standards, so parents have had to pick up the slack.

Below, we detail some tips for parents so that they can make sure their child is getting the most out of their remote academic experience.  

Create a Structure

Especially in the primary grades, the structure that school provides young students is as important to their future success as the content of their lessons. Even for older students, a structured work environment supports personal responsibility and self-direction. So, don’t encourage executive dysfunction in your child. Set a schedule for the weekdays and weekends. Children and teens do their best if there are plans for each day, especially the weekdays when they would have been in school.

Set Regular Bedtimes and Wake-Ups

Many kids love to sleep in on the weekends. In the absence of the ringing school bell every weekday morning, distance learning can create unhealthy sleep habits for children inclined to keep their weekend routine going well into the workweek. It is up to parents to enforce a sleep and wake schedule that is optimal for learning

Establish a School Day Educational Schedule

Even adults who work from home have trouble separating their work and home lives. It takes a considerable amount of executive function to effectively manage the different aspects of your life. Parents can consider starting with a morning meeting and daily agenda since this is what most teachers do to start the day. Have a list of the subjects and activities for the day, and create 30- to 45-minute blocks of time to work on the subjects that your child takes.

Your Free NeuroZone Consultation

Erin Badour is a Licensed Speech-Language Pathologist, with a Certificate of Clinical Competence from the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association. She founded NeuroZone as a resource for parents eager to support their children’s learning. The COVID-19 epidemic has made matters even more difficult for struggling students and their parents. NeuroZone leverages the latest in brain science to set up a sequence of protocols specifically targeted to the unique needs of kids with emotional issues and learning disabilities. And our cutting edge protocols are drug-free. 

Each one of our 5-star reviews represents another success story. Schedule your free consultation at NeuroZone and see what your child is truly capable of. Call (310) 821-3640 to speak with one of our helpful representatives. 

Supporting Your Child’s Mental Health

The coronavirus epidemic has taken a toll on public health in more ways than one. The fear and instability that has defined most of 2020 put a strain on those already vulnerable to mental health issues. Because of their emotional sensitivity and inability to comprehend these turbulent times, many children are at risk for depression and anxiety. In teenagers, if mental health issues are left untreated, they can quickly develop into defiance, addiction or other self-destructive behaviors.[3] 

It is important that children young and old know to avoid language that might blame others for the virus and lead to stigma.

Pay attention to what children see or hear on television, radio or online. Provide information that is truthful and appropriate for the age and developmental level of the child. Consider reducing the amount of screen time focused on COVID-19. Too much information on one topic can lead to anxiety.

When Will California Schools Reopen?

At the end of August, Governor Gavin Newsom released California’s color-coded system for safe reopening. The county earns its color or tier based on two factors: the number of new positive cases per 100,000 population and the percentage of positive test results over the previous week. Purple counties are experiencing the most substantial spread, indicating that most schools are closed to in-person instruction. Yellow counties have the fewest number of COVID-19 cases and schools may fully reopen according to state and county guidelines. Counties may slide up and down the continuum according to the latest testing data. Check California’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy to see your county’s current status.[4] 

California’s Color Coded COVID-19 Risk Assessment

How Can NeuroZone Help?

Nobody ever said parenting would be easy. But if your child has special needs in unprecedented times, it is quite easy to feel overwhelmed. Stay calm and contact NeuroZone. We treat a variety of emotional, learning and attention deficit disorders without drugs. Our proven protocols are backed by the latest brain science. NeuroZone is here to help!


  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2020, August 20). COVID-19: Checklists to Guide Parents, Guardians, and Caregivers. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
  2. American Academy of Pediatrics. (2020, August 19). COVID-19 Planning Considerations: Guidance for School Re-entry. American Academy of Pediatrics.
  3. UNICEF. (2020, August 28). Supporting your child’s mental health as they return to school during COVID-19. UNICEF.
  4. California State Government. (2020, September 21). Blueprint for a Safer Economy. Coronavirus COVID-19 Response.
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