You’ve heard of vaccine hesitancy. Now experts are coining the term “school hesitancy” to describe students and families hesitant to return to in-person learning despite their schools being open. While there are different reasons behind school hesitancy, some see it as an educational and social crisis that will have a lasting impact through the school system for years to come.

Pauline Rojas’s high school in San Antonio is open. But like many of her classmates, she has not returned, and has little interest in doing so.

During the coronavirus pandemic, she started working 20 to 40 hours per week at Raising Cane’s, a fast-food restaurant, and has used the money to help pay her family’s internet bill, buy clothes and save for a car.

Ms. Rojas, 18, has no doubt that a year of online school, squeezed between work shifts that end at midnight, has affected her learning. Still, she has embraced her new role as a breadwinner, sharing responsibilities with her mother who works at a hardware store.

“I wanted to take the stress off my mom,” she said. “I’m no longer a kid. I’m capable of having a job, holding a job and making my own money.”

Read this full article in the New York Times: ‘Schools Are Open, but Many Families Remain Hesitant to Return’