Lisa Woodland

Thesis title:

Protecting well-being of parents and children during a pandemic


Certain infectious diseases spread readily among school children. To combat this, Public Health England has produced recommendations about the length of time children should be kept off school when sick. Unfortunately, these recommendations are often not followed and parents often send their children to school whilst sick. This is known as presenteeism. On Monday 23 March 2020, a nationwide school closure was put in place across England in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Only vulnerable children or children of key workers (critical to the COVID-19 response) could attend school or childcare facilities. Schools reopened in September 2020 and the attendance of all children is mandatory. However, children and parents are required to follow government guidance to mitigate the impact of the pandemic. In particular, children must be kept off school when they have symptoms of COVID-19.

The aim of this PhD is to understand the factors that affect the well-being of parents and children during a pandemic. Mixed methods will be used in a series of interviews and surveys, in order to meet the research aim.

First supervisor:

James Rubin

CASE partner:

Public Health England


1 – Health Practices, Innovation & Implementation




doi: 10.1136/bmjpo-2020-000825

Social Media:

twitter @LisaWoodland13 –