Schools Require Family Computer, Study Says
College kids aren't the only members of the family who will need a new computer this fall as the school year begins.
Home computers and printers are becoming a standard requirement for elementary and secondary school students nationwide, according to a study released today (Aug. 9) by the Marketing to Moms Coalition. The survey tallied responses from 1,270 mothers with children under 18 living at home.
Nearly half (45 percent) of moms of children ages 7-12, and 61 percent with teenagers, say their child would not be able to complete homework assignments without home access to a computer. And nearly one in three children from elementary through high school is assigned online homework by teachers.
Uploading assignments is on the rise, too ― nearly a quarter (23 percent) of kids ages 7-12 and one-third of teenagers are expected to post assignments online at least once during the year.
And it's not only kids who'll lay claim to the family computer. Parents will want to review their child's progress online.
"The helicopter parenting trends are continuing and many parents expect to be able to check their child's grade periodically and communicate with the teacher via email any time they want. We've moved way beyond traditional parent-teacher conferences," Amy Colton, founding member of the Marketing to Moms Coalition, said in a statement.
In fact, finances are a concern for the majority of families heading into the back-to-school spending season this fall. "Moms continue to be frugal with the family budget," she said.
A capable family computer can be found for $500 or less. Opt for a laptop and the price can drop by $120 with the added convenience of portability — even if that's only between kitchen and bedroom.
The June 2011 Back-to-School study was funded by the Marketing to Moms Coalition, an independent nonprofit organization. Survey participants were recruited online through a mail panel provider, Market Tools. The nationally representative sample of mothers consisted of 1,059 English-speaking moms and 211 Spanish-speaking moms. This sample was balanced on region, ethnicity, age and household income.
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