Analyzing the Relationship Between Children’s Schooling Modality and Parenting Stress During the COVID-19 Pandemic



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The rise of the COVID-19 pandemic led to the shutdown of US schools in March of 2020 in order to curb the spread of the virus. However, for the 2020-2021 school year, many parents were given the option to select either in-person or remote education modalities for their children, thus leading to a major dilemma. While in-person schooling may be linked with greater benefits for children’s development, it is also paired with a greater risk of contracting the virus. Due to this conundrum, which is unique to the 2020-2021 school year, this research study aims to analyze the impacts of COVID-19 on parent mental health with regards to children’s schooling modality. Using Qualtrics, a survey was developed with questions pertaining to children’s education and the COVID-Related Family Safety/Stability Stress subscale from the COVID-Related Parenting Stress scale. This subscale examines stress that parents experience regarding keeping their children and families safe during the pandemic. Utilizing the SPSS software, ANOVA and Pearson Chi-Square tests were conducted, and the results reveal that parents of children who are remotely learning feel more confident about keeping their children safe and therefore experience less COVID-Related Family Safety/Stability stress compared to parents of children who are physically learning at school. This underscores a need to alleviate parenting stress among parents of children who are physically attending school. Future goals for this study include analyzing child mental health across schooling modalities, other measures of parent mental health, and parents of children who are participating in hybrid learning.