According to the research collated by Professor Bill Lucas in collaboration with other colleagues at the Centre for Real-World Learning at the University of Winchester, there are :
Six Types of Parent Engagement
Type 1 – Parenting Helping all families to have the basic home conditions in place including active parenting strategies and regular communication with school
Type 2 – Communicating Designing effective home-to-school and school-to-home communication methods which engage all parents regularly
Type 3 – Volunteering Recruiting volunteer parents to help in school in classes and in extra-curricular activities
Type 4 – Learning at home Providing good information to enable all parents to help with homework and offer other family learning activities
Type 5 – Decision-making Including parents in decision-making activities to build a sense of ownership including being involved in governance
Type 6 – Collaborating with Community Finding and using resources from the wider parent community to enrich school life
His paper contains many practical strategies to help with these too. Here are the ones about communication:
Invest time in establishing personalised communications with all parents
On at least a half-termly basis, make sure parents know what their child is going to be learning and have some simple ideas as to how they can support them, as well as web-support. Ideally this should be done on a weekly basis in advance of the week ahead and available online.
Identify and remove educational jargon from all school literature and encourage all staff to speak to parents in plain English
Make it possible for all new parents to observe lessons at first hand
Use technology – e-mail, scanning etc – to communicate as regularly as possible, ensuring that they are often relaying positive messages
Here at Jigsaw School Apps we are passionate about parental engagement – helping schools communicate with parents so that they are better informed and feel included in their child’s education. Our apps make it easy to communicate frequently and quickly with parents via their smartphones. Unlike the text-based systems, schools don’t pay per message and the messages can be as long as you like and include pictures! There is a simple subscription fee per year – it doesn’t matter how big the school, how many pupils or how many messages you send.
There are so many things you can share with your apps – including news, surveys, events calendar and pdf files – so you can make bigger documents like newsletters and timetables available in your apps. We’ll brand them for your school – and your parents will find them in their app store under your name!
Some parents are hard to reach because they may not have English as their first language. The apps can translate all your content into the language of the parent’s choice! We offer over 70 languages. We make the apps for iPhones, Android devices and Windows phones.
For more details have a look at the website: www.jigsawschoolapps.com or call us free on 0800 999 7500