Around 92 per cent of the parents across the country do not want to send their children back to school immediately after the coronavirus lockdown is lifted, stated a nationwide survey by ParentCircle. While academics have taken a massive hit due to the lockdown, the parents seem to be in no hurry to send their kids back to school.
The nationwide survey, which had 12,000 respondents participating, covered key areas of a child’s life, including schooling, playing with other children, birthday parties, visits to malls, movies and restaurants, activity classes, sports and fitness, public transport and vacation.
As per the survey, at least 56 per cent opined that they would wait and watch the situation for at least a month after reopening and assess the situation before sending their children back to school. Barely eight per cent are willing to send their children back to school immediately upon reopening. Homeschooling was considered to be a good option by 15 per cent of the respondents.
Sports and other activities
Also, around 64 per cent are not willing to send their kids to birthday parties for the rest of the calendar year, even if the social distancing norms are followed. Not just birthday parties, even visits to malls and movie halls are set to take a major backseat with less than one per cent of parents willing to visit a mall or a movie theatre immediately upon reopening. A good 50 per cent have decided against it for the rest of the year. Further, 49 per cent parents said they would not visit a restaurant for the rest of the year, while another 33 per cent are unwilling to risk for at least three months.
Parents unable to decide
While playing constitutes a major part of a child’s life, a majority of parents are unable to decide whether to allow their children to play with their friends immediately after easing of the norms. Around 50 per cent of parents want to wait and watch. However, a healthy 35 per cent of the parents are willing to get their children back to parks to play with other children, only if social distancing norms are followed strictly. But again, 45 per cent have said no to sports activities for at least six months.
Parents need assurance
ParentCircle Founder and Managing Director Nalina Ramalakshmi said, “An overwhelming majority of parents are worried and unsure. Parents need assurance that their children will be safe in school, group activities and other public places. As a society, we need to continue with physical distancing practices, washing of hands and wearing masks for the foreseeable future. The onus is on schools and other public places to ensure that safety measures and physical distancing policies are in place before they open up for activities.”