Are you a panicking parent or a calm carer?

If you’re a working parent wondering how you’ll survive the summer school holidays, new research shows you’re not alone!

The approach of the long summer school holidays can bring out different feelings for different families. While some parents and guardians look forward to spending more time with the children, others can be slightly nervous about how they are going to keep the kids entertained for such a long stretch, especially if they’re having to balance work demands at the same time.

But new research from nursery and back-up care provider Bright Horizons shows that whichever camp you might be in, you’re unlikely to be alone!

Bright Horizons surveyed parents to find out how they’re managing childcare over this year’s summer holidays. And if you haven’t yet decided how you’re going to keep the children busy then you’re in the majority – a whopping 80% haven’t yet made arrangements! They do, however, have it on their to-do list for this month.

Denise Priest, Director of Employer and Strategic Partnerships at Bright Horizons, said: “Parents have had to perform a real juggling act over the past year. Between having to home school and care for children, while also potentially work from home in new and unfamiliar ways, they’ve had a lot on their plates. There is light at the end of the tunnel now with schools and holiday playschemes getting back into more of a routine, but the summer holidays can still be a trying time for those wanting to spend quality time with their children while also keeping up in the workplace. And that’s even before adding in all the uncertainty about where might be safe to travel to for a family holiday.

“The fact that so many parents haven’t yet gotten around to organising childcare for the holidays, but plan to very shortly, is a great opportunity for employers to support staff. Having tangible solutions in place to help staff with childcare, whether that’s back-up care or sponsored access to holiday clubs, can make all the difference to employees.”  

While the majority haven’t yet organised childcare, there are some parents who are ahead of the curve – 18% have already made their arrangements as they like to be organised. At the other end of the scale, there are those that are trying not to think about it as is causes them to panic! But just 3% of respondents fall into this category.

Tellingly, not a single respondent who didn’t have childcare organised was feeling relaxed about it, showing what a source of stress summer can be.

Denise adds: “Working parents have been incredibly resilient over the past year. Our research shows that loyalty and productivity are both positively impacted by employers providing family support. With the right support from their employers, parents and their children can truly have a summer to look forward to.”

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