New Poll:

What Parents Really Think about their Children’s Education


Hint: It’s Not Great

December 7, 2020– Boston, MA– The National Parents Union released the findings of their latest national poll today, which showed that parents are increasingly worried about their child staying on track in school; a plurality of parents believe their child is learning less; the majority of parents say schools should rethink education and come up with news ways to reach children; hybrid learning is the least preferred option; and too few parents say their school is offering mental health services to support students’ wellbeing.

Keri Rodrigues, co-founder and president of the National Parents Union summed up the rough start to the school year saying, “It looks like I am not alone when I say things are getting worse. Across the board, parents see the warning signs, from learning loss to support for mental health, schools aren’t stepping up to provide children with the resources they need. If there is a silver lining, it’s that this pandemic has given parents new insight into these shortcomings and families are banding together across the country to do something about it. And the National Parents Union is ready to provide our support, our resources and our fight to make sure families are empowered to advocate for their children.”


  • 68% are worried a lot/some about making sure their child stays on track in school; the highest percentage since the polling began in April
  • 67% are worried a lot/some about themselves or someone in their family getting COVID
  • 64% are worried a lot/some about their kids missing important social interactions
  • 56% are worried a lot/some about being able to make ends meet


  • 42% of parents say their child is learning less than they normally would; 40% say the same amount; and 17% think their child is learning more
    • In September 38% said their child was learning less and in October 35% felt the same
  • 54% of parents whose kids are in a hybrid model say they’re learning less, the highest for any of the education models. Among in-person parents, 35% say their child is learning less and among remote parents 40% feel that way


  • 48% of parents whose child is currently in a hybrid learning model would choose to stay with that for the rest of the year. 28% would prefer in-person only and 21% would prefer only remote
  • 64% of in-person parents say they want to stick with that model for the rest of the year, while 20% would prefer hybrid and 13% prefer remote
  • 70% of remote only parents would choose that model for the rest of the year. 14% would choose to go hybrid and 13% want to go in-person


  • 66% of parents says schools should be focused on rethinking how to educate students, coming up with new ways to teach children moving forward as a result of the COVID-19 crisis
  • That number has grown since the question was first asked in September (60%) and then again in October (64%)


  • Just 31% of parents say their child’s school is currently offering any services or resources to support students’ mental health and emotional wellbeing. 40% report that their schools are not offering these services and 29% are unsure

November 13-18, 2020

N=1000 parents of public school students K-12