September 2020 has a whole new “Back to School” vibe for kids, teens and their families. This year the normal rituals of selecting school bags, pencil cases and trainers have been somewhat overtaken by swotting up and trying to understand their school's Covid procedures.
But some of the usual feelings remain – over a quarter of kids worry that they will have forgotten everything (27%) and nearly a third of kids (29%) are excited to see their teacher.
"I'm starting high school. I’ve got a new school bag and my brother's old phone for starting. I'm a bit worried about how much homework I’m going to get and about getting lost but my brother says no one does.” - Lily
“We don't have to wear masks but the teachers do. I like my new teacher because she's not as "shouty" as my last one.” - Jack
But understandably there’s new experiences to navigate. Over a quarter of kids (27%) were concerned around maintaining social distancing at school. But interestingly it seems that there really is a “new normal” and distancing has become a way of life for many kids and teens, as when asked the same in May over a third of kids (33%) were worried about keeping 2m apart at school.
“Well our breaks are different and lunch is later now and we’ve to eat it in our classes. We don’t have to wear masks but there’s a one-way system for walking around the school and we’ve got different doors to go in and out now.” - Isaac
And there’s new rituals beyond pencil cases and lunchboxes for kids to enjoy.
“We have to take our own hand sanitiser in to school now so everyone is asking ‘what kind have you got?’ and ‘what does yours smell of’ some people have like strawberry and nice smells – mine is just the proper stuff.”- Amelia
So, despite natural apprehensions, overall returning to school seems to have gone smoothly for the majority of kids and teens. However how long the schools stay open with cases increasing daily remains to be seen and the impact of six months at home is yet to fully play out.
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