COVID-19: Missing More Than a Classroom

The impact of school closures on children’s nutrition

Young children at Taemigidu ECD learning Centre, Nawaeb District, Morobe Province


Identify and reach out to vulnerable children in the first 8,000 days who are at greatest risk of deteriorating nutrition outcomes due to suspension of school feeding programmes. In 2019, there were 144 million stunted children under 5 globally, with the COVID-19 pandemic projected to add another 3.4 million children under 5. While similar trends may exist for older children, the paucity of data on nutrition in children over 5 means that few estimates exist, (e.g., 74 million girls and 117 million boys aged 5–19 suffering from thinness). As a result of this data scarcity, identifying those who are vulnerable to nutrition shocks and to school dropout through ongoing household assessment and data collection (e.g., VAM,1 DHS2) at the household level is a necessary first step to minimizing these effects through interventions with school-aged children.

Artur Borkowski, Javier Santiago Ortiz Correa, Donald A. P. Bundy, Carmen Burbano, Chika Hayashi, Edward Lloyd-Evans, Jutta Neitzel and Nicolas Reuge
Publication date

Files available for download