"The Square Eyed Boy"
The majority of parents are concerned about children’s screen time post-pandemic, yet acknowledge benefits in creativity and communication, according to a new BBC Children’s and Education survey of parents across the UK on their attitudes towards screens.
The survey revealed that 79% of parents feel that children have used screens more since the pandemic. Whilst 67% parents feel concerned about what their child is watching, they do see real value in screens, with 65% agreeing that they have the ability to foster creativity and communication.
At the same time, 93% of parents are interested in educational programming for their children. Furthermore, 51% parents say that education is the most important thing when it comes to what children are watching on screens, followed by 30% saying entertainment; and 70% say that it is important that the content their child accesses comes from a trusted source.
Against the feeling that children are using screens more, the survey dispels the notion that parents universally feel guilty about giving their children access to screens: 55% of parents admitted they do not experience guilt when providing their child with a phone, though 83% say it is important to limit children’s screen time, which suggests that quality over quantity is an important factor to parents.
“The debate around children and screens is often a difficult one for parents to navigate. As a public service offering that has earned the unswerving trust of British families, the BBC is in a unique position to address this. When it comes to screens, it is what is on them that counts, and we are proud to highlight, through this campaign, our support to all families across the UK by delivering bold, multi-genre and age appropriate content that enriches children’s abilities to connect with others, express their ideas and develop essential communication skills – whilst keeping them entertained,” said Patricia Hidalgo, Director of BBC Children’s and Education.