We entered our fifth week of lockdown and the fifth week of the COVID tracker. While some things remained relatively stable, such as the level of students’ concern about the virus, other things have raised more questions and worries.
During week five, we saw Ofsted commenting that the school shutdown is ‘likely to widen the attainment gap’, recommending that children should get back to school as quickly as possible, while Ofqual said that practical qualifications may be further delayed.
So with the last seven days in mind, here’s what was found by the COVID tracker:
1. There’s no such thing as strange nowadays:
While students continue to be hit hard by the global disruption, they’re not opposed to adapting, creating new habits and changing up behaviour to keep sane and healthy. We asked our panel what strange things they’re doing that seem completely normal right now, but five weeks ago may have been a bit mad. Here are a few of what we got:
Staying tuned in to what students are thinking and doing through these light-hearted insights could be the making of your messaging, the difference between really hitting home and resonating, or not. Make it your mission to find out about their daily routines and ways of coping, and create fun and engaging content around them.
And talking of adapting…
2. 1 in 4 prospective students would be happy to delay the start of the new university year until January.
“University isn’t just about the content and lecture presentations that can apparently be supplied online. It’s about the friendships and experiences made, and if that’s not possible for September, I’d rather hold off till the new year for a proper uni experience. We’ve already lost prom and leavers, we don’t want to forfeit the first year too.”
So keep communicating with your students, and make sure you address their concerns and provide clear information in your messaging.
If you’d like to know more about student attitudes, feelings and the strange and wonderful things they’ve been getting up to during the COVID-19 crisis, you can sign up for the full report from the COVID-tracker here which analyses over 220,000 data points and offers insight into what your student audience are really thinking to help inform your plan of action during these changing times.