America’s caregivers find themselves in the middle of a kindness crisis, new research suggests, with more than two-thirds of parents often worrying that the world is “an unkind place for my child.”

Fully 70% of parents find that the world is unkind to their kids. Among teachers, the figure is 86%, according to new research by Sesame Workshop, the New York-based nonprofit behindSesame Street.

The findings, out Thursday, come from a wide-ranging survey of 2,002 parents and 500 teachers. They hold a few surprises. Among them:

  • 58% of teachers say most children today are disrespectful;
  • 67% of parents say most children are disrespectful;
  • 52% of teachers say being kind “is not a priority” to most people.

“There is this feeling (that) we’re not in a kind place at the moment, although at the individual level, parents do feel that their children are kind and that they are doing a good job in that way,” said Jennifer Kotler Clarke, a developmental scientist and vice president of research and evaluation at Sesame Workshop.

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