Every fourth child stayed home from kindergarten after the reopening
Many Norwegian parents have kept their children at home from kindergarten after the reopening following the COVID-19 outbreak in Norway. In several districts in Oslo, only half of the children have been sent back to preschool. The Minister of Education and Research has expressed concern.
The Norwegian Directorate for Education and Training has studied the absentee situation in nearly 5,500 kindergartens in Norway or 97% of the country’s kindergartens.
The survey shows that many have chosen to keep their children at home even after the kindergartens reopened. The main reason was that one or both parents were at home, according to the directorate.
All kindergartens in the country were closed to nearly all children between Mar. 16 and Apr. 27. Only children of two parents who both worked in critical social functions received support.
“I get worried when I hear that so many children were at home at the initial reopening. Fortunately, the vast majority eventually returned. Although the infection situation is not the same now as just before the start of the summer, I hope parents continue to send their children to kindergarten and that they experience it as safe,” said Minister of Education and Integration Guri Melby (V).
Children with a minority background participated to a lesser extent in kindergarten during the period after the reopening, and 4% were still at home the second week. In June, however, 90% were back again.