A national helpline has been set up for parents struggling with homeschooling and managing their child’s behaviour during the coronavirus lockdown.
With schools closed to the majority of children, parents have had to become temporary teachers, but with many also having to juggle working from home, home educating hasn’t always come easy.
But now mums and dads struggling to teach their children about the mysteries of fractions and oxbow lakes will be able to access expert guidance via a national helpline.
The service, launched by a coalition of academy trusts and parenting groups, will offer advice to families on how to educate their children at home while schools remain closed amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
Operating six days a week, StarLine will be run by a team of teachers and education and parenting experts, who will share tips and resources to help home-learning.
The expert team will also advise frazzled parents on how to structure the day, offer guidance on dealing with difficult behaviour, or any other aspect of homeschooling that they are finding challenging.
Commenting on the new resource, Justine Roberts, chief executive of parenting site Mumsnet, which helped to create the helpline, said: “Lockdown learning has been a huge adjustment for all families, and for some it’s extremely challenging.
“There's no doubt that anxiety and stress are high in the mix, and some reassuring input from expert educators will be really valuable to frazzled and frantic parents.”
Mufti Hamid Patel, chief executive of Star Academies, one of the academy trusts behind the project, said: “We understand that this is a time of additional pressure for many parents and carers.
“The combination of working from home, caring for our loved ones and trying to educate our children is a difficult juggling act.
“Together with our partners, we want to use our educational expertise to support parents and carers who are grappling with the challenge of trying to maintain their children’s learning.”
The helpline launch, will come as a welcome resource for concerned parents with recent research revealing three quarters of parents (77%) are worried the coronavirus pandemic will impact their kids’ education.
The survey by Parentkind, found falling behind or missing out on learning, cancelled exams and lack of socialisation were among the biggest concerns mums and dads currently have for their children.
The confidential phone line will cover all areas of the curriculum across all phases of education.
Education Secretary Gavin Williamson said: “StarLine represents another inspiring example of teachers and education experts working together to share their knowledge, resources and expertise with schools and families across the country.”
The contact number is 0330 3139162.
Additional reporting PA.