Quality partnerships require a reciprocal commitment from staff and parents to work together to improve student learning and wellbeing.
Learning is not limited to the classroom. The beliefs, expectations and experience of parents are powerful determinants in students' achievement. Effective partnerships can help to raise parents' awareness of their ability to improve their children's learning and wellbeing. Understanding the school, home and community contribution to student learning helps cultivate a holistic learning environment.
While involving parents in school activities (e.g. volunteering, fund raising, attending school events) is important, it is engagement through learning partnerships which has been shown to have much greater impact on student outcomes (Harris, Andrew-Power, & Goodall, 2009, pp. 12–13).
Points to consider
- How do school personnel build a whole-school commitment to engaging with parents?
- How can schools support parents to be positively engaged with their child's learning, at home and at school?
- How does the school ensure that it is inclusive of all parents in the school including parents with different cultural and educational backgrounds, working arrangements, and communication requirements?
- How can teachers and parents work together to help children learn?
- How does the school find out what would help parents?
- How do teachers seek to understand and learn about students, including their home situation and culture?
- How can parents better support teachers?