Now we know lots of parents who are teachers* use Parent Ping at the moment, so for our questions about A-Levels (which were a bit of a fact test) we separated out the (parent) teachers responses from the overall Parent Ping sample. We found that 29% of parents don’t understand or are not sure how a grade was decided upon for A-Levels this year. However, nearly half (48%) reported that they ‘more or less’ understand, which is actually more than the proportion of (parent) teachers who selected this option. This might be because (parent) teachers are more aware of the complexity of the situation and therefore less likely to feel confident… Either way twice as many (parent) teachers reported that they ‘definitely’ know.
We also wanted to recognise that A-Levels aren’t the only qualification affected by missed exams and make-shift grades. We looked at recognition of other qualifications that can get you into university too, finding high recognition for BTEC (92%), the IB (86%) and Scottish Highers (81%), but less familiarity of other vocational quals such as the new T Levels (61%).
*with qualified teacher status, we know loads of parents were being homeschool-teacher last term, but that’s not what we’re talking about here.
2. Imagining education
We have been asking parents to use their imagination rather a lot this week. First, we asked parents to imagine it’s the first day back at school for their child, but in our imaginary scenario, time is limited, and the teacher can only focus on ONE of these things…
Which would parents prefer?
The most popular response was ‘well-being and peer relations’ (48%), but amongst dads ‘behaviour and routines’ came out top (38%)
The vast majority (87%) chose school B. This was true across mums & dads and the different age ranges of children.
Finally, we asked parent to imagine they are on holiday at an all-inclusive hotel with a pool. We told them that they plan to spend most of their time in the complex but on the first day they see a teacher from their child’s school is also at the hotel. We then made them choose whether they…
This is a cheeky question that we’ve also asked on Teacher Tapp before, and to our small sample of Teacher Tappers in the Netherlands (read more about that here). Most of you will be relieved to know that teachers and parents are broadly in sync on this one, with the majority of both choosing the ‘speak once and then avoid option’ (although if this fills you with relief, you may want to keep an eye out for dads – who were more likely to want to chat throughout the holiday than mums were!)
We asked a set of questions about chores last weekend. We found that tidying up (including bedrooms!) was the chore that overwhelmingly caused the most rows in Parent Pingers’ households. The level of agreement with this grew as families aged, peaking in families who have both primary and secondary age kids at 58% of responses! However, for families with only secondary aged kids, it seems less of an issue… instead washing up leads the way in causing rows for these families.
Perhaps to avoid the washing up (!) a quarter of parents told us that they ‘ate out to help out’ last week and 30% told us that they planned to do it this week. Although a quarter were unsure of their plans, a firm 45% say they definitely won’t be eating out to help out. This perhaps relates to last week’s finding that many parents are still massively worried about someone in their family catching Covid.
In other news, most parents report spending between £5 and £9 on birthday presents for children who invite their kids to a party. The amount they spend creeps up as their family gets older though, with twice as many parents of secondary age children saying they spend £10-£14 than parents of preschool age children. As for the one person (that’s right, just one) who reported that they spend nothing at all on a present, maybe they are re-gifting (78% of parents told us they did this).
Speaking of parties, whilst understandably many parents told us that their child hadn’t had a birthday party recently, for those that did, most (74%) spent up to £200 on a party. With surprisingly little variation by child age (at least that’s one thing that doesn’t get more expensive as kids get older!)
Lying is an issue that every parent comes up against at some time or other, and our most clicked tip last week was a blog on how to deal with it. If you missed it, you can catch up here: https://www.anitacleare.co.uk/childrens-books-on-lying/
Coming up next week
Next week is GCSE results day, so we’ll be collecting your thoughts on that. We’ll also be asking about school choice, flexible working and (yawn) bedtime.
In other exciting news, we will also be ‘taking over’ Holly Branson’s Instagram page and sharing tips on school shoes and smiling.