The reluctance of parents in sending their children to schools amid the threat of Coronavirus was widely apparent in a survey conducted over a sample of 10,000 parents in the NCR.
In the survey conducted by a sociologist in Meerut, most of the parents said no to schools for their children and to declare this session as a zero year as done by the governments of the US and some other countries.
An online survey on “How to send children to school under the coronavirus pandemic” was conducted by sociologist Dr Uzma Naaz under the guidance of Prof Dharamavir Mahajan, a prominent Sociologist and former Principal of Nanak Chand Anglo Sanskrit Postgraduate College of Chaudhary Charan Singh University in Meerut.
Speaking on her survey, Dr Naaz said that parents seemed to be undergoing a sort of trauma socially as well as economically due to the pandemic. When we approached parents while conducting the survey all of them cleared that their first preference is the wellbeing of the children, education comes next.
If schools are started amid pandemic scare then it would be difficult for the children, especially the younger ones, to maintain proper social distancing, hygiene and precautions needed to protect from Corona, said Dr Naaz adding that hence the parents through this survey demand from the Government to declare the current academic session as a zero year.
About 10,000 parents from Delhi, Gurugram and Western UP had responded to the online survey conducted by Dr Naaz between June 12 and June 14 in which they seemed reluctant to take their children out of the safety net of their houses.
According to Dr Naaz, 77.5 per cent of men and 22.5 per cent of women participated in this survey of which 84.3 per cent were parents, 5.5 per cent grandparents, 1.2 maternal grandparents and 8.9 per cent other guardians. The highest, 40.1 per cent among these were parents or guardian of students from class one to five, 21.6 per cent were parents of students from class 6 to 8, 20 per cent were guardians of students from class 9 to 12. Significantly 18.4 per cent were parents of Nursery to UKG children.
97.3 per cent of the parents believed schools were not at all safe zones for kids as ensuring total adherence to social distancing, hygiene and cleanliness by the students would be a herculean task for the teachers and the way they take care of their child at home would not be possible at the schools.
When they did not send their children to hobby classes, sports activities or birthday parties since the lockdown till date, how they could even think of taking the risk to send them to the school, she said adding that nothing on earth can stop children from playing and mingling with each other, the parents opine.
Responding to a question on the responsibility of the school if their children are infected in the school, 54.2 per cent of the parents attributed it to the school management and 45.3 per cent to parents themselves, informed Dr Naaz adding that 74 per cent parents have said that they would not send the child to school without taking an undertaking in writing from the school giving them a guarantee about the safety of their children.
Dr Naaz, while sharing her survey findings further said that 84.3 per cent of the parents were quoted by the World Health Organization as saying that it would not be possible for their child to keep masks in school for 6 consecutive hours while 15.7 per cent considered it possible. Apart from this, 96.8 per cent said that school buses were completely unsafe viz-a-viz social distancing.
A majority (81.8 per cent) of parents feared the possibility of Coronavirus infection through the books and notebooks checked in the school. Also, 82 per cent of the parents are in the favour of not giving fees for this period on the basis of orders of NOIDA District Magistrate who waived fees of all schools during the lockdown.