Why Covid’s Disruptions Take a Heavy Toll on Teens

For 16-year-old Zuri Arreola, life today differs in almost every way since the Covid-19 pandemic began more than a year ago. Last year, she was a gregarious high school sophomore, passionate about acting and dancing. Today, Arreola rarely if ever sees her friends and has no time for hobbies. “I was so social, and now I feel so — I don’t know, introverted, awkward,” she says. Her public school in Los Angeles has been remote since last March. The online classes, which she finds exhausting, sometimes give her throbbing headaches.

Because her father’s income as a carpenter fell during the pandemic and her family is ineligible for stimulus payments — her parents are undocumented —…

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