Christmas relaxation prompts fears of school closures in the new year from teachers and parents

Broadband Genie talked to teachers and parents about the impact of home schooling and their fears for future lockdowns as we await the rollout of the vaccine across the UK.

Parents across the UK are distressed about the chances of the country going into a strict lockdown after the Christmas period, saying they “might have to take a sabbatical if we have another lockdown” to cope with home learning.

Jenna, a 40-year-old mum of two from Portsmouth, has had her kids sent three times since schools reopened due to other pupils testing positive. When asked about the scenario of longer school closures, Jenna said “I might have to take a sabbatical if we have another lockdown. The first time I was running on adrenaline but knowing what I know now another sustained lockdown would not be something I could manage with work.”

Access to better technology such as fast broadband and laptops can help ease the strain on parents and 96% of teachers stated its importance for home learning. However, not everyone has access to these essentials. Jenna told us of a friend whose children only had one phone between them to do their lessons from each day.

Ultimately, all these factors will slow down the progress of our children at school. Worryingly, 95% of teachers say that school closures have a significant impact on their pupils’ development and 95% are concerned about the effect on their prospects, research by Broadband Genie revealed.

Alex Tofts from Broadband Genie said: “Access to decent broadband and technology is essential for home learning. With public libraries set to close, some pupils will have no way of accessing online resources.”

“Some schools will be able to provide a limited number of laptops but many pupils will have to be set work that can be completed offline, putting them at a disadvantage. If Schools close for this lockdown, the Government must step up and provide the resources for pupils to continue their education.”

Broadband Genie commissioned a survey of 300 teachers in the UK between 26th October and the 2nd of November 2020 for their opinion of teaching and pupil progress during school closures in the first lockdown.

About Broadband Genie:

Broadband Genie is an independent switching site providing consumers and businesses with practical help, advice, and price comparison for home broadband, mobile broadband, phones, TV services, and mobile accessories. Broadband Genie was launched in March 2004 as the first dedicated consumer comparison site for broadband. It is now one of the largest in the UK, attracting more than 100,000 visitors each month.

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General questions or about the survey – Paul Madden

Broadband and technical – Alex Tofts

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