47% of Canadian parents feeling uncertain for the 2022 school season

With the ambiguity and concerns presented by the highly transmissible COVID-19 Omicron variant, which is spreading rapidly across Canada and causing Public Health measures to continuously change, almost half (47%) of Canadian parents are feeling uncertain about the return to school and what that means for their children’s learning.

While schools in British Columbia opened up again on January 10th, Toronto’s schools were due to open today but got delayed thanks to a snowstorm. Once again plans have had to be changed and parents are left figuring out a quick solution.

“After a year like no other, this survey has shown us that our kids, parents and teachers are incredibly resilient. The country was catapulted into an online environment when classrooms closed and learning went virtual, but it allowed parents to become more active partners in their kids’ education through technology. As the pandemic continues to challenge Canadians, we have one goal – to help students succeed.”- John Baker, President and CEO of D2L. 

D2L’s recent omnibus survey explores how parents are feeling about the year ahead, and how they feel about online learning platforms being a part of their child’s education experience.  

Key Findings: 

  • How they’re feeling about online learning: Most Canadians parents are viewing online learning as part of their child’s education experience positively with 36% feeling connected and 20% feeling empowered. However, almost 3-in-10 parents are feeling overwhelmed. 
  • Feelings about academic progress: More than half (54%) of parents feel positive about their children’s academic progress thus far, saying that it has been meeting expectations, and 23% of Canadian parents say that they are exceeding expectations for the school year. Contributors to progress over the past semester have been attributed to: teacher communication, digital tools and learning platforms, and being back in the classroom. 
  • How does this compare to how parents felt in August? Right now, parents are feeling a mix of uncertainty (47%), hopefulness (35%), and anxiety (24%). This is a shift from a benchmark survey conducted on August 16, 2021 showing that parents were mostly hopeful (36%) about the upcoming school year, followed by uncertain (30%) and anxious (19%). 

I spoke with D2L’s President and CEO, John Baker on the latest episode of the SocialDad Podcast, about the role of learning platforms in today’s classrooms and ways parents can support themselves and their children through this hybrid learning environment:

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