Parental Sentiments about Current School Year are Shifting

October 8, 2020

Following up on our August back to school study, we asked parents with children entering K-12th grade this year about their current concerns and feelings about school, how school is being taught and their food shopping behavior. This is the latest wave of our ongoing study with AMC Global designed to help clients and industry leaders navigate quickly changing consumer behavior during the pandemic.

There has been a shift to greater remote learning than anticipated in the August wave of our study. While fewer parents are anxious/worried about the school year, more report concerns about students missing school milestones/events and failing this year. This wave also looked at food purchasing behavior, showing parents buying more fresh, healthy and easy-to-prepare foods and more single-serve snack items for their student children.

You can see a full representation of the consumer food shopping data here or click on the callout below.

We also discovered that parental concerns and sentiments about the upcoming school year are shifting. You can see a full representation of the data here or click on the callout below.

Key findings for the week of October 5:

  • Seventy-one percent of respondents are purchasing more fresh foods for their children’s at-home lunches, and 65% are making a fresh lunch for their child at lunchtime. Sixty-four percent report buying more single-serve snack items, and 65% report buying more quick and easy-to-prepare foods for their children.
  • Most parents (61%) report fully remote learning for their children, a significant departure from the 41% schools were reporting in August. Some of parents’ top concerns about the school year have decreased with only 15% concerned now about the spread of COVID-19 among teachers and school staff compared to 26% in August. Other concerns have increased like concern over children missing grade-specific milestones (19% vs. 11%) and children failing school (13% vs. 6%).
  • Parents report shifts in their feelings about the disrupted school year, with 40% reporting feeling anxious and worried, compared to 54% in August. Twenty percent report feeling content, compared to 7% in August.

A complete representation of the back-to-school parental sentiment data can be found here. And complete data representation of parental food shopping behavior can be found here. New results and findings will be released on October 22.

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