The coronavirus pandemic that’s sweeping the globe has affected the lives of everyone — including the British royal family. Like most moms around the world, Kate Middleton has found herself responsible for her children’s education and now must homeschool them as their school, Thomas’s Battersea, has shut down to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19, reports Us Weekly.
A source tells the publication that Kate has always been against homeschooling her children, Prince George and Princess Charlotte. This may be partly influenced by her husband, Prince William. The idea of royals going to school is a relatively new one. George’s grandfather, Prince Charles, was homeschooled, as was every royal before him.
However, when William and Prince Harry were born, their mother, Princess Diana, insisted the boys go to a regular school to try and give them a more normal life, a tradition that William has continued.
The existence of the pandemic has left Kate little choice but to embrace teaching her children from home. While the Duchess of Cambridge reportedly restricts her children’s access to electronics, not letting them use iPads or computers and limiting their TV time, she has acknowledged that they are necessary to facilitate the kids’ remote learning.
According to the source, it took George and Charlotte a while to adjust to their new environment, as they just wanted to play together instead of study. The source continued, saying that the duchess has now gotten them into a routine, where they can achieve a balance between schooling and playing. The source also said that Kate was in charge of both school time and playtime, although “William is also very involved too.”
For his part, the Duke of Cambridge is said to have taught the kids lessons and organized games for them to all play together.
The kids’ school closed down on March 20 as the coronavirus continued to spread into the U.K. That same weekend, the Cambridges decided to move back to Anmer Hall, their country home in Norfolk, to self-isolate. From there, the children are able to access the online learning system the school put together to continue their lessons.
“This will ensure that children have continuity of learning when they are unable to attend school,” a spokesperson for the school told Us Weekly.
Like many parents around the world, Kate and William are balancing caring for their kids with their work responsibilities. A report from Vanity Fair states that the two are ramping up work with their charitable organizations, reorienting all of them to focus on the pandemic.
A royal insider told the publication that the Cambridges are very aware of their unique position and wish to help as much as they can. As Harry and Meghan Markle are no longer working royals, and many other senior members of the family are at a higher risk of contracting the virus due to their age, William and Kate feel they are “best positioned to take on more work.”