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L.A. County parents say their children have been ‘substantially hurt’ by school closures, survey finds

Los Angeles County residents rate education among the worst of several factors affecting their quality of life, displaying one of the biggest drops in recent years among parents of children in public schools, according to a UCLA survey.

More than three-quarters of parents in the county with children ages 5 to 18 believe their children have been “substantially hurt” academically or socially by being away from school and taking part in distance learning for months.

“It’s a big number,” said Zev Yaroslavsky, director of the Los Angeles Initiative at UCLA’s Luskin School of Public Affairs, which publishes an annual Quality of Life index in partnership with the public-opinion firm FM3 Research. “It’s not counterintuitive; it’s intuitive, but the number surprised most of us — and it was across all the demographics.”

The Quality of Life index is a composite score on a scale of 10 to 100 that reflects how satisfied people are in nine categories and the weight they assign to each category. The overall score this year remained relatively steady, at 58 — meaning residents rated their overall quality of life slightly more positively than negatively — but there were notable shifts within the categories and differences by subgroups.

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