Nationwide Survey On Parents' Response To Coronavirus

In a nationwide survey conducted by Parentcircle on parents' response to Coronavirus, 92% Indian parents showed unwillingness to send their child back to school upon reopening! Read on for more.

By Team ParentCircle  • 19 min read

Nationwide Survey On Parents' Response To Coronavirus

We all know that the coronavirus-induced lockdown has severely affected life in India. How has it impacted the mindset of the Indian parents and what are they likely to do in the foreseeable future? ParentCircle, India’s No.1 parenting platform announces the results of a Nationwide Online Survey conducted to understand the pulse of the Indian parent after nearly 50 days of lockdown. 

The nationwide survey, which had 12000 respondents participating, covered key areas of a child’s life, including schooling, playing with other children, birthday parties, visits to malls, movies and restaurants, activity classes, sports and fitness, public transport, and vacation. There is evident fear in the minds of the parents at the moment and going by the responses in the survey, it is unlikely to go away any time soon. 

With most of the educational institutions announcing shutdowns as early as March, academics have taken a big hit. Yet, parents are in no hurry to send their wards back to school. They want to be absolutely sure that the Covid situation is under complete control before risking sending their children back to school. After nearly 50 days of stringent lockdown, 92% of Indian parents are unwilling to send their child to school immediately upon reopening. 

The trend of unwillingness was not confined to one city or a particular hotspot but across cities where the online survey is conducted.

At least 56% opined that they will watch for at least a month after reopening and assess the situation before sending their children back to school. Barely 8% are willing to send their children back to school immediately upon reopening. Home schooling, a method not often talked in India saw a surge in ratings with 15% considering home-schooling as an option.

No birthday parties for remainder of 2020 

The survey also covered other important aspects of a child’s social life including playing with other children, birthday parties, sports and activities, vacation, visit to malls and movies and restaurants - aspects we associate with a child’s life quite regularly. Such is the level of apprehension that 64% parents are unwilling to send their children to birthday parties for the rest of the calendar year even if social distancing norms are followed. 

No restaurants, malls and movies for remainder of 2020 

It is not just birthday parties feeling the heat, even visits to malls and movie halls are set to take a major backseat with less than 1% of parents willing to visit a mall or a movie theatre immediately upon reopening. A good 50% have decided against any visit to a mall or a movie theatre for the rest of the year. The figure is just as compelling for eating out even though parents had an option to choose ‘will go if safety standards are strictly followed’. 49% parents said they will not visit a restaurant for the rest of the year while another 33% are unwilling to risk for at least 3 months. It is important to note that parents are either being unsure about safety standards or just do not want to take any risk. Those who are comfortable with safety standards make up for only 17% of the responses. 

Play only if social distancing 

Nationwide Survey On Parents' Response To Coronavirus

Friendship is the cornerstone of a child’s life and a majority of parents are unable to decide whether to allow their children to play with their friends immediately after easing of norms. 50% parents are wanting to wait and watch the evolving situation before any decision in this regard. However, some bright light here. A healthy 35% parents are willing to get their children back to parks to play with other children, but only if social distancing norms are followed strictly. 

Sports takes a backseat, individual sports silver lining 

45% say no to sports activities for at least 6 months. But good news, 25% are willing to send their children back to individual sports after restart. 

Family vacation 

Nationwide Survey On Parents' Response To Coronavirus

The idea of vacation has taken a major beating due to the Covid-19, on two fronts – Risks related to travel and looming economic crisis. Our survey indicates less than 1% are willing to ‘holiday’ like they did in pre-Covid days immediately after the easing of lockdown norms. 57% feel it is unsafe to travel for a considerable period. Interestingly, 30% want to save for the rainy day instead of spending on vacations due to an impending economic impact of Coronavirus, which includes potential loss of jobs and pay cuts across sectors.

We now present two sets of data points for your reference. National highlights from the survey and city-wise highlights from the top 6 cities that took part in the survey – Bangalore, Chennai, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Delhi.

National highlights 

School reopening: 

Nationwide Survey On Parents' Response To Coronavirus

56% will monitor for a month after school reopening before sending their child back to school. 21% want to avoid sending children to school for at least 6 months. 15% considering home-schooling as an option

Birthday parties: 

64% won’t send their children to birthday parties in 2020. 35% willing to send if safety and social distancing measures firmly in place.

Playing with other children: 

35% willing to let their children play with other children but only with social distancing. 50% want to wait and watch Covid situation before deciding 

Malls and movies: 

50% say no mall and movies for the remainder of 2020. Less than 0.5% willing to go as soon as the lockdown ends

Restaurant visit:

83% not planning to visit any restaurant for at least 3 months after lockdown 

Activity classes:

26% to switch to online activity classes. 43% feel activity classes can wait till things get clearer 

Sports and fitness:

43% say no to sports activities for the next 6 months. 25% say yes to individual sports and 26% unable to decide 

Vacation: 

57% feel travelling for a family vacation too risky in the near future. 30% want to save the vacation money due to uncertain economic future.

Public Transport: 

Nationwide Survey On Parents' Response To Coronavirus

43% feel public transport will be too risky for a considerable period 

Handshake: 

Nationwide Survey On Parents' Response To Coronavirus

70% want children to do namaste instead of shaking hands.

City-wise Top Statistics

Bangalore highlights 

School reopening: 56% will monitor for a month after school reopening before sending their child back to school. 21% want to avoid sending children to school for at least 6 months. 12% considering home-schooling as an option

Birthday parties: 55% won’t send their children to birthday parties in 2020. 44% willing to willing to send if safety and social distancing measures firmly in place.

Playing with other children: 38% willing to let their children play with other children but only with social distancing. 44% want to wait and watch Covid situation before deciding

Malls and movies: 52% say no mall and movies for the remainder of 2020. Less than 1% willing to go as soon as the lockdown ends 

Restaurant visit: 80% not planning to visit any restaurant for at least 3 months after lockdown
Activity classes: 28% to switch to online activity classes. 36% feel activity classes can wait till things get clearer 

Sports and fitness: 43% say no to sports activities for the next 6 months. 25% say yes to individual sports and 26% unable to decide 

Vacation: 59% feel travelling for a family vacation too risky in the near future

Public Transport: 43% feel public transport will be too risky for a considerable period 

Handshake: 70% want children to do namaste instead of shaking hands. 

Mumbai highlights 

School reopening: 54% will monitor for a month after school reopening before sending their child back to school. 24% want to avoid sending children to school for at least 6 months. 14% considering home-schooling as an option 

Birthday parties: 60% won’t send their children to birthday parties in 2020. 39% willing to send if safety and social distancing measures firmly in place 

Playing with other children: 32% willing to let their children play with other children but only with social distancing. 55% want to wait and watch Covid situation before deciding 

Malls and movies: 43% say no mall and movies for the remainder of 2020. 0.16% okay going as soon as the lockdown ends 

Restaurant visit: 78% not planning to visit any restaurant for at least 3 months after lockdown

Activity classes:
25% to switch to online activity classes. 44% feel activity classes can wait till things get clearer
Sports and fitness: 43% say no to sports activities for the next 6 months. 25% say yes to individual sports and 27% unable to decide 

Vacation: 53% feel travelling for a family vacation too risky in the near future 

Public Transport: 37% feel public transport will be too risky for a considerable period 

Handshake: 65% want children to do namaste instead of shaking hands. 

Chennai highlights 

School reopening: 54% will monitor for a month after school reopening before sending their child back to school. 22% want to avoid sending children to school for at least 6 months. 13% considering home-schooling as an option 

Birthday parties: 66% won’t send their children to birthday parties in 2020. 34% willing to send if safety and social distancing measures firmly in place 

Playing with other children: 39% willing to let their children play with other children but only with social distancing. 44% want to wait and watch Covid situation before deciding 

Malls and movies: 59% say no mall and movies for the remainder of 2020. Less than 1% willing to go as soon as the lockdown ends 

Restaurant visit: 86% not planning to visit any restaurant for at least 3 months after lockdown 
Activity classes: 26% to switch to online activity classes. 38% feel activity classes can wait till things get clearer

Sports and fitness: 43% say no to sports activities for the next 6 months. 29% say yes to individual sports and 22% unable to decide

Vacation: 63% feel travelling for a family vacation too risky in the near future 

Public Transport: 44% feel public transport will be too risky for a considerable period 

Handshake: 69% want children to do namaste instead of shaking hands.

Kolkata highlights

School reopening: 57% will monitor for a month after school reopening before sending their child back to school. 20% want to avoid sending children to school for at least 6 months. 16% considering home-schooling as an option 

Birthday parties: 69% won’t send their children to birthday parties in 2020. 31% willing to send if safety and social distancing measures firmly in place 

Playing with other children: 30% willing to let their children play with other children but only with social distancing. 56% want to wait and watch Covid situation before deciding 

Malls and movies: 47% say no mall and movies for the remainder of 2020. 0.21% okay going as soon as the lockdown ends 

Restaurant visit: 82% not planning to visit any restaurant for at least 3 months after lockdown Activity classes: 31% to switch to online activity classes. 40% feel activity classes can wait till things get clearer 

Sports and fitness: 46% say no to sports activities for the next 6 months. 22% say yes to individual sports and 30% unable to decide

Vacation: 53% feel travelling for a family vacation too risky in the near future

Public Transport: 39% feel public transport will be too risky for a considerable period 

Handshake: 67% want children to do namaste instead of shaking hands. 

Hyderabad highlights 

School reopening: 53% will monitor for a month after school reopening before sending their child back to school. 22% want to avoid sending children to school for at least 6 months. 18% considering home-schooling as an option 

Birthday parties: 58% won’t send their children to birthday parties in 2020. 41% willing to send if safety and social distancing measures firmly in place 

Playing with other children: 42% willing to let their children play with other children but only with social distancing. 42% want to wait and watch Covid situation before deciding 

Malls and movies: 54% say no mall and movies for the remainder of 2020. 0.21% okay going as soon as the lockdown ends 

Restaurant visit: 84% not planning to visit any restaurant for at least 3 months after lockdown Activity classes: 30% to switch to online activity classes. 35% feel activity classes can wait till things get clearer 

Sports and fitness: 45% say no to sports activities for the next 6 months. 26% say yes to individual sports and 22% unable to decide 

Vacation: 58% feel travelling for a family vacation too risky in the near future Public Transport: 39% feel public transport will be too risky for a considerable period

Handshake: 72% want children to do namaste instead of shaking hands.

Delhi highlights 

School reopening: 53% will monitor for a month after school reopening before sending their child back to school. 24% want to avoid sending children to school for at least 6 months. 18% considering home-schooling as an option

Birthday parties: 68% won’t send their children to birthday parties in 2020. 32% willing to send if safety and social distancing measures firmly in place 

Playing with other children: 30% willing to let their children play with other children but only with social distancing. 53% want to wait and watch Covid situation before deciding 

Malls and movies: 48% say no mall and movies for the remainder of 2020. Less than 1% willing to go as soon as the lockdown ends 

Restaurant visit: 85% not planning to visit any restaurant for at least 3 months after lockdown Activity classes: 26% to switch to online activity classes. 46% feel activity classes can wait till things get clearer 

Sports and fitness: 44% say no to sports activities for the next 6 months. 23% say yes to individual sports and 30% unable to decide 

Vacation: 57% feel travelling for a family vacation too risky in the near future 

Public Transport: 48% feel public transport will be too risky for a considerable period 

Handshake: 69% want children to do namaste instead of shaking hands. 

Commenting on the survey, Nalina Ramalakshmi, Founder & Managing Director of ParentCircle, says, “An overwhelming majority of parents are worried and unsure. They are anxious and not ready to take any chances. Parents need assurance that their children will be safe in school, group activities and other public places. They would prefer their children stay home and be safe, rather than take any risks by letting them venture out till the COVID-19 crisis blows over. As a society, we need to continue with physical distancing practices, washing of hands and wearing masks for the foreseeable future to ensure the health and safety of everyone, including our children. The onus is on schools and other public places to ensure that safety measures and physical distancing policies are in place before they open up for activities.” 

We request you to cover the findings of the survey. For survey queries, interaction opportunities and interviews with the leadership and expert team of ParentCircle, please feel free to get in touch with us. We will be happy to explain the nationwide survey in greater detail so your publication’s readers/viewers can benefit immensely from this important social initiative. Please call us on 9791039335/ or email us at contact@parentcircle.com for more details.

About ParentCircle 

We are India’s #1 parenting platform www.parentcircle.com. Started in 2011 as a parenting magazine, today, ParentCircle has emerged as a strong print and digital force in India. Over the last 8 years, at ParentCircle, we have been pursuing a single-minded mission – to build confidence in parents to raise happy, healthy, confident, compassionate children. To be a confident parent, we believe a strong parent-child connection is the key, which in turn makes children feel loved, understood, safe and secure. 

Today, our magazines enjoy readership of nearly 1.5 lakh. Our digital platform is clocking a viewership rate of 15 million per year. With global parenting experts and bestselling authors on board, ParentCircle is fast emerging as the one-stop solution for parent engagement programs for families, corporate houses, and educational institutions, among others. We received global recognition for the maiden edition of #GadgetFreeHour in November 2019.

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