KResearch recently conducted a survey on views of parents towards the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic during the 2021 school year. The poll was made on a random sample of 600 persons in the Bangkok Metropolitan area. The survey suggests that 88.5% of the parents are concerned and have no confidence if their children have to return to school as they view that the latest wave of COVID-19 has gotten quite worse with steadily increases in the number of daily infections. Additionally, there is the risk of COVID-19 resurgence, and there are no vaccines available for students. Meanwhile, approximately 11.5% of the parents, who are optimistic about the COVID-19 situation, view that the pandemic may have subsided somewhat prior to the new school year and educational institutions would have implemented stringent measures to monitor the situation.
Concurrently, more than 89.8% of the parents surveyed are worried about their financial liquidity. Most of these parents are low-to middle-income earners whose have been adversely affected by a number of factors resulting from COVID-19 pandemic, such as job cuts and reduction in working hours. Those who own businesses in particular have experienced disappointing sales, which has crimped their income amid rising expenditures. However, the adjustment methods of this group of parents include saving daily expenses and finding more sources of income besides savings. Some of them choose to pay tuition fees in installments or request a waiver from the school, buy the cheaper ones, use the old ones and reduce supplementary tutoring expenses.
KResearch, therefore, expects that parents in the Bangkok Metropolitan area may incur approximately THB26.40 billion, a contraction of 6.6 percent, in education expenses during the 2021 school year, which would represent a decline for the second consecutive year from that surveyed in 2020. The decline is due to educational institutions' policy of reducing tuition fees, though the most important factor is the fact that parents have tightened their belts to cope with their declining income. This is consistent with our poll results, which show that parents have cut their spending on certain items for their children such as school uniforms, shoes, bags and stationery.
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