Thank you to every parent who had their say on the second of our coronavirus and school closures surveys. We opened the survey on Thursday 23rd April 2020 and closed it on Monday 4th May 2020, which was the timeframe originally stated in our news article.
The overwhelming level of response indicates that this is an issue of huge national importance that parents feel passionately about. We appreciate every PTA, parent group, parent, school and college who shared the survey with their parent communities on social media. It was also widely shared by education stakeholders and policymakers across three nations including the National Governance Association, Children in NI and the Family Stability Network (FASTN). The Department for Education (DfE) in England also supported our survey by posting a link to it on their Facebook page on Saturday 2nd May, and this was enormously helpful in exponentially increasing the number of responses we received.
We created this survey so that we could present parent voice to the government education departments in England, Wales and Northern Ireland (see our sister organisation Connect for parent groups and parental engagement in Scotland), as well as other education decision-makers. Our research provides evidence on parents' experiences of school closures and their concerns for their child's education. Parents are the primary education stakeholder, and it is important that their voice is not lost when it comes to big decisions that impact on their lives. Our survey was an independent project, following on from our research when school closures were first announced. It was created to gauge a snapshot of parents' views, with the objective to keep parents part of the conversation on school closures. Our hope is that policymakers will consider the impact on parents of any decision that they make in terms of school closures in this instance, but also ensure that the voice of parents is not overlooked in any future decisions.
We deliberately did not ask detailed demographic questions or require names or contact details of respondents. This was to create a simple, anonymous and easy-to-complete survey to gain a maximum response rate, and the overwhelming number of participants shows that it was widely accessible. The survey platform that we use - Dotdigital - is able to screen out multiple responses from the same user to ensure that there is no duplication of response to skew the data.
We are currently analysing the extraordinary number of responses we have received and will publish full reports to our website as soon as possible. In the meantime, see our headline findings and infographics for England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
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