Need to know: COVID-19
- As of Friday, October 16, there were 241,623 confirmed cases. See cases by county here.
- The share of positive tests as a percentage of total tests is 6.3%.
Need to know: Voting
Thursday was the first day of early voting in North Carolina. Before you head to the polls, check out our voter’s guide on the races most important to education: governor, lieutenant governor, and state superintendent of public instruction. We take a look at who each candidate is, their fundraising numbers, and more.
And whether you’re voting by mail, early voting, or voting on election day, check out our how-to-vote guide for important tips from EdNC’s Analisa Sorrells.
COVID-19 continues to disrupt higher education — both students and institutions. Three new data sets illustrate the effect of the pandemic on higher education and paint a troubling picture.
First, updated enrollment data from the National Student Clearinghouse shows worsening declines. Compared to fall 2019, undergraduate enrollment at public four-year institutions, private nonprofit four-year institutions, and community colleges is down, but enrollment is up at private for-profit institutions.
First-time students represent the largest declines at these institutions, particularly community colleges where first-time student enrollment is down 22.7%. Among private for-profit institutions, first-time student enrollment is up, especially for students ages 21-29.
Student mental health
The latest Strada Education Network COVID-19 Work and Education Survey shows students are struggling, both academically and emotionally. Strada surveyed students at four-year institutions between Sep. 10 and 25 and found that 13% of them expect COVID-19 will delay their graduation. They also cite emotional well-being as their biggest challenge this fall. About three in 10 students said online instruction has made their ability to learn much worse.
The National Association of Student Financial Aid Administrators released a new report showing 59% of colleges and universities have seen an increase in students appealing their financial aid packages. Students are recommended to appeal — or submit a professional judgment request, as it’s officially called — when their financial circumstances change.