DESSA, The City and Mental Health

Across the city, around 8,600 children have lost a parent or caregiver to COVID — a population that would entirely fill 15 average-sized New York City public schools. That’s 1 in every 200 children in New York City, nearly double the rate across the country, according to the COVID Collaborative, a bipartisan group of experts. 

THE CITY (, a news site that serves New Yorkers, wants to learn how NYC public schools have expanded mental health resources to meet the needs of Covid-grieving children. We’re eager to hear from parents of public school children as well as people who work with children who have experienced a COVID loss, including social workers, guidance counselors, teachers and principals.

Since the spring of 2020, THE CITY’s MISSING THEM project has remembered more than 3,000 New Yorkers lost to COVID-19. Now, we want to understand how families are coping and whether COVID-bereaved children are getting the help they need. The project is a collaboration with Columbia Journalism Investigations and Type Investigations.
You can contact reporters Liz Donovan at (215) 820-9709 (cell, WhatsApp and Signal) or and Fazil Khan at (646) 479-9610. We will be happy to protect your identity if you do not want to be named in the story — we simply want to hear the perspectives of parents and educators about this issue.