As the UK faces its second week in lockdown to reduce the spread of the coronavirus pandemic, the new endeavour for families is being together 24/7.
Following the closure of all British schools on 20th March and more people working from home under the government’s advice, parents and children alike are adapting to spending much more time together.
With the country being warned that life might not return to normal for up to six months, many parents are worried about the impact the lockdown could have on their children’s education as many headteachers encourage parents to start teaching from home.
Education charity Parentkind found 77% of 691 parents that participated in their survey felt concerned that the coronavirus outbreak would affect their child’s education.
— Parentkind (@Parentkind) March 31, 2020
On the other hand, nearly 10% felt the schools’ closing could have a positive effect, believing it will give them more time to reconnect as a family.
“thrown in the deep end”
Leslie Wray – Parent of two teenagers
Leslie Wray, a hairdresser from Tumble, Carmarthenshire is concerned about the affects the coronavirus crisis will have on her two sons’ education. Samuel, 17, is studying A-Levels and Oliver, 16, was studying his GCSEs until the closure of his school resulted in the cancellation of all exams.
Leslie says her youngest son “is hoping to go back to sixth form and then my older son who’s doing his first year of A-levels has been thrown in the deep end on whether to go back to do his second year”. Leslie believes Samuel and Oliver “are a little bit concerned but, being boys, I think they are happy they don’t have to sit any exams.”
In the meantime, Samuel and Oliver are working with their father Michael to deliver fresh food to the local community.
A key worker is Sharon Groom, an NHS nurse from Cross Hands, Carmarthenshire. She lives with her husband and two older children and works every weekday in the chemotherapy ward at the local hospital.
She says: “As soon as I come into the house I wash straight away, my uniform is in the washing machine so I am taking precautions because I don’t want to bring it home if I have come into contact with somebody.”
Speaking about how the rest of her family is coping in lockdown, Sharon said they had all been “taking it in turns to cook supper so everyone’s learning new skills and sharing everything”.
Sharon Groom, NHS nurse
Eirian Jones is a home improvement officer from Llangain and despite her children being adults they are all living under one roof during the lockdown. Looking at the positive aspects of being stuck in the house, Eirian said: “Despite my children being adults I’d say I’m seeing more of them now than I would normally.”
The government has released advice to parents and carers on supporting younger people’s wellbeing during the coronavirus outbreak.
WHAT PEOPLE ARE BEING TOLD TO DO:
- Only leave the house for food, health reasons or work (if you can’t work at home)
- When out, always stay two metres apart from others
- Wash your hands as soon as you get home