Boston, Massachusetts—A new survey of parents from the National Union of Parents has found that 74% of parents are extremely or very concerned about rising inflation for everyday consumer goods like gas or food and 65% are worry about their children staying on track in school.
Rising inflation and school difficulties were the two main issues that worried parents the most according to the survey. A majority of parents are also worried about their children’s mental health, children missing out on important social interactions, rising housing costs and contracting the coronavirus.
Keri Rodrigues, co-founder and president of the National Union of Parents, reacted to the poll saying, “What this survey shows is that the attention of state legislatures and Congress and what is covered by the media in no way reflects what parents are actually going through. The weight of the world is on the shoulders of parents right now and it is unbearable. American families are under pressure and are rightly frustrated with what is happening in the economy and in schools when all we ever wanted was to provide a better quality of life than we had growing up to our children. It is critical that elected officials and school leaders find ways to actively listen to and engage parents to find solutions that will ease the strain on American families.
Along with concern about rising inflation, the poll also asked parents what they thought about what should be taught in schools. The survey revealed that schools should be encouraged to:
- Have students read books by authors of different racial and ethnic backgrounds (60%)
- Teach more US history lessons about historical figures from racial or ethnic groups who may have been excluded from lessons in the past (58%)
- Teach about racial inequality in America’s past (53%)
- Teaching about racial inequality in America today (52%)
Federal Education Funding
- A majority of parents, 53%, have not seen or heard of additional resources in their child’s school or classroom as a result of additional federal funding.
- Sixty-one percent of parents were not asked by their children’s school to provide input or feedback on how federal funding should be used.
- More than 70% of parents want schools to use federal funding to prioritize access to mental health, computers and high-speed internet access for students, breakfast and lunch program tuition, services and support for students with disabilities, providing more flexible options for students to access learning, providing more college preparation, more tutoring opportunities, and hiring more teachers.
Parents speak out on key topics
- Test: 62% agree that schools should continue to assess the quality of student learning using statewide testing so we can compare results to previous years and schools can identify areas where students may fall behind or need support.
- Education as a civil right: 84% support changing laws to establish a right to quality public education as a civil right alongside the right to vote, meaning the government would be required by law to provide every child with the access to quality education, and that the government could be challenged in court if this right is violated.
- CROWN Act: 83% support a law that would protect public school students and staff from discrimination based on race-related hair texture or hairstyles, meaning public schools would be required to allow students and staff to wear styles such as braids, dreadlocks, twists, afros or natural hair.
1,000 parents of K-12 students
Dates in the field: March 18-21, 2022
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