“Hello, we’re Parent Ping but you can call us Ping”. Well not really, but you get what we mean… this week’s blog is all about names. Names of teachers, names of parents, names they call each other, and the names they want to be called. We also have our regular peek on how Covid is impacting parenting & a quick look at blazers.
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…and now on with the blog!
1. What's in a name?
When it comes to interactions between school staff and parents, the difference between primary and secondary schools was always going to be stark: only 26% of secondary school parents have been to school in the past week compared to 66% of primary school parents.
So, focusing on primary schools, who have parents seen? Unsurprisingly the class teacher is most visible (47%) but almost the same proportion (46%) reported seeing the headteacher.
Yet, despite this increased contact, it seems that some primary teachers might not know parents’ names…
Whilst you told us that 70% of secondary teachers stick with the safety of a formal Mr/Mrs/Miss + surname when speaking face-to-face, only 39% of primary teachers reportedly opt for this. Instead, 25% of primary parents tell us that they get called ‘mum’ or ‘dad’ by teachers, & a third think teachers actively avoid having to say any name at all!
When speaking face-to-face to a teacher, how do they usually address you?
So, what would you prefer? Well, let’s start by saying many of you (37%) don’t mind. For those who do have a preference, it seems that secondary schools are getting it right for most parents by sticking with surnames. But 30% of you would like to be called by your first name. Hardly anyone is happy being called ‘mum’ or ‘dad’.
How would you prefer they address you?
If mum/dad is the annoying de facto when teachers talk to parents, then sir/miss could be the parental equivalent. But only 4% of parents report using this term when talking to school staff. Most frequently they use Mr/Mrs/Miss + surname (in both primary and secondary) whilst a relaxed 21% use first names (more frequent in secondary school than primary).
When speaking face-to-face to teachers at your child’s school or nursery, how do you usually address them?
2. Covid update
6 under 11: Few of you thought that the rule of 6 should include children under the age of 11, and perhaps a bit like asking turkeys to vote for Christmas, those of you with younger children were least in favour.
Cleaning up: Despite the press suggesting that uniforms should be washed daily to prevent coronavirus spread, most of you are taking a more measured approach. Shirts / t-shirts are the most frequently washed item with over half of you reporting they are washed daily. There’s slightly less washing in households with secondary-aged kids, presumably because they are less mucky!
Keep your distance: Seven in ten primary school parents say they are able to socially distance during the school-run and of those that have staggered drop-off/pick-up times, six out of ten say it is helping with social distancing.
64% of secondary kids & 14% of primary wear a blazer as part of their uniform. A surprising 5% of pre-schoolers who have a uniform also wear one!