Central Alberta parents are encouraged to take part in a survey to find out how families are coping, or thriving, during the return to the classroom.
The Alberta School Councils’ Association is conducting the Parent Pandemic Pulse Survey to find out what it’s been like for parents and students since schools reopened, or while continuing online learning.
The online survey, which closes Friday at 11:59 p.m., is open to all parents or guardians in Alberta with children in kindergarten to Grade 12. Participation is anonymous and the survey takes about 15 minutes to complete.
“We’re still looking for more responses from small urban and rural areas. We’ve gotten quite a bit from larger metros,” said Jolaine Kochisarli, communications director with the association.
“The more voices that we can hear from, the better. It’s important that the parents’ voice is heard.”
She said the survey was developed in conjunction with the Alberta Teachers’ Association, which has also been surveying its members.
An ATA survey in October showed 87 per cent of teachers and school leaders were stressed, and 92 per cent were exhausted by the end of the day.
Kochisarli said the school councils also ask parents how they are feeling, and how their children are reacting to the changes in their routines.
“You have to reach out and give people a venue to say how they are feeling.”
Everybody is running flat out trying to do as much as possible, she said.
“It seems to be a stressful time for everyone,” Kochisarli said.
Sarah Rollingson, chair of the citywide school council for Red Deer Public Schools, said diploma exams are of particular concern for local families.
So far, the province has only made fall diploma exams optional.
“I feel there is a lot of stress coming from my own high schooler. I’m hearing that from other parents in the district. They’re worried. They’re kids are worried,” Rollingson said.
She said parents have had fewer opportunities during the pandemic to express themselves and this is their chance to be part of the collective voice.
“Everyone’s challenges, or struggles, or successes through this time are important. Some parents had a wonderful time online. For some, it was the hardest thing. It doesn’t matter where you land on that spectrum, your voice matters.”
The survey can be found at https://ca.surveygizmo.com/s3/50085641/ASCApreventcovidtest or through www.albertaschoolcouncils.ca.