What have you always wondered about the economy? Tell Us
Parenting in a Pandemic

Pandemic problems continue for parents working and watching kids at home

Mitchell Hartman Feb 16, 2021
Heard on:
HTML EMBED:
COPY
John Moore/Getty Images
Parenting in a Pandemic

Pandemic problems continue for parents working and watching kids at home

Mitchell Hartman Feb 16, 2021
Heard on:
John Moore/Getty Images
HTML EMBED:
COPY

For many parents, school holidays during the COVID-19 pandemic don’t feel much different from a regular day of remote learning for their kids. Parents, especially mothers, continue to face the challenges of both working and supervising their kids’ school days at home.

Johanna Meagher has three kids ages 10, 8 and 4. She worked for a big hospital in Washington, D.C., until the pandemic hit.

“My oldest daughter is very high risk for COVID, she has a chronic lung disease, and I wasn’t able to work from home, so I had to leave that position,” Meagher said.

She was unemployed, schooling her kids at home, and didn’t have any income until her unemployment benefits came through in August.

To help parents like Meagher, Democrats in Congress want to provide 12 weeks of paid family and medical leave, said Dawn Huckelbridge at the group Paid Leave for All.

“This pandemic has reemphasized how critical this is to our functioning as families and an economy,” Huckelbridge said.

Meagher now has a new job she can do from home, while the older kids do schoolwork and the youngest is in daycare.

“My littlest one struggles to let me work,” she said with a laugh.

Meagher said she needs schools to open in the fall so her youngest can go to kindergarten. Otherwise she’ll have to give up work — again.

Are you stuck at home with kids right now?

Host Jed Kim with the Million Bazillion logo

Check out our brand-new podcast “Million Bazillion.” We help dollars make more sense with lessons about money for the whole family.

Each week we answer a new question from a kid, like where money comes from, how to negotiate with parents, why things cost what they do and how to save up for something you want.

Listen here or subscribe wherever you get podcasts!

Read More

Collapse

Marketplace is on a mission.

We believe Main Street matters as much as Wall Street, economic news is made relevant and real through human stories, and a touch of humor helps enliven topics you might typically find…well, dull.

Through the signature style that only Marketplace can deliver, we’re on a mission to raise the economic intelligence of the country—but we don’t do it alone. We count on listeners and readers like you to keep this public service free and accessible to all. Will you become a partner in our mission today?

Your donation is critical to the future of public service journalism. Support our work today – for as little as $5 – and help us keep making people smarter.