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The coronavirus causes many students to miss classes.

Chronic absenteeism is a problem in American education at best, but with the vast majority of schools closed and distance education delivered, more students than ever miss classes – without logging in, never not register or not complete homework.

Absences appear particularly high in schools with large populations of low-income students, whose access to personal computers and Internet connections may be irregular. Some teachers report that only half of their students participate regularly.

New York City, the largest school district in the country, has yet to release data on the number of children participating in online learning. The district said it would officially start monitoring remote attendance on Monday. But students and teachers have reported widespread disparities like those seen elsewhere in the country.

Titilayo Aluko, 18, a junior at Landmark High School in Manhattan, was thwarted by his access to technology. She has a laptop delivered by the neighborhood, but no Wi-Fi at home. The cable company removed the router from the Bronx family apartment after struggling to pay the monthly bill.

“I keep thinking,” Oh my God, maybe I won’t pass, “she said. “I’m just very scared for the future. “

Crater attendance in low-income schools contrasts with reports from several selective or affluent schools, where almost 100 percent of students participate in online learning. The dramatic split promises to further widen the typical academic achievement gaps between poor students, the middle class and the wealthy.


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