ERIC Number: ED476571
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2003-Apr
Reference Count: N/A
In the Good Old Summertime: What Do Parents Want for Their Kids?
Le Menestrel, Suzanne
This study investigated parents' attitudes toward the summer vacation period and their children's summer experiences. Participants were a nationally representative sample of approximately 400 parents of children age 5-14 years who completed telephone interviews as part of two subsequent omnibus surveys. Most parents ranged in age from 35-54 years. Nearly half had annual incomes of $50,000 or more, 67 percent were employed full-time, and three-quarters were married. Most of the parents were white and non-Hispanic. Parents wanted their children to relax and have fun in the summer, regardless of pressures to meet higher educational standards. Parents from all income levels wanted the same things for their children. Mothers were more focused on planning specific summer experiences for their children. Parents whose children were in organized programs or activities reported spending, on average, $625. Parents of color were more focused than white parents on having their children's summer experiences be educationally worthwhile. Safety was considered the number one challenge for parents when planning summer experiences. Participants in the follow-up survey responded to two questions: "What is the most important thing you hope your child gets out of the summer?" and "How has this country's increased attention to homeland security affected your planning for your child's summer?" Most parents said that increased homeland security had no effect on their summer planning. Over half the parents reiterated the notion that summer was a time for children to have fun and relax; only 4 percent wanted their children to get better prepared for school in the fall. An appendix contains the survey questions. (SM)
Descriptors: Child Safety, Elementary Secondary Education, Minority Groups, Parent Attitudes, Racial Differences, Recreational Activities, Summer Programs, Youth Programs
Academy for Educational Development, 1825 Connecticut Ave., NW, Washington, D.C. 20009-5721. Tel: 202-884-8000; Fax: 202-884-8400; Web site: http://www.aed.org.
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Academy for Educational Development, Washington, DC.