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Parental engagement practices provide opportunities for parents to learn about effective ways to converse with their children about learning and become comfortable talking with teachers and other staff about their children’s academic and social development. For this reason, it is important that, from the beginning, parents feel comfortable participating in activities on school grounds, and consider the school as a partner in their children’s learning. We need to support each other and build the community around our kids in order for all of them to succeed.

Last week’s blog clearly outlined how home and school need to work together to fully support children to reach their full learning potential. The role of parents in the school environment is very different to their role in the home, although the two complement each other. The effect that parental engagement at school has on a child’s academic achievement is difficult to determine but research suggests that a parent’s engagement is positively associated with students’ social and emotional adjustment.

This week I would like to take the opportunity to explain to you how BEPS is hoping to improve this partnership during 2017.

Communication

We want to communicate with families about BEPS programs and student progress through effective school-to-home and home-to-school communications. Hence my blog. The blog potentially opens up discussion between home and school, and makes that discussion available to the whole community.

However, when talking to some parents the other day they commented that the blog now makes the newsletter, the BEPS weekly, less relevant and hence maybe not as well read. Is this the case for you? I want the blog to inform you of those issues that are important at BEPS and to the education of your children, our students. dates1I would like you to know our goals; learning and teaching philosophy; have clear information on school policies; and have a forum that allows you to become informed and ask questions. The blog also enables you to go back and search and re-read sections if you want to.

However, I think that the BEPS weekly news is also important to inform you about the regular schedule of useful dates, notices, and other community information. So this week I am going double up a little so that no-one misses out.

Participating

dates-2We are trying to schedule activities so as to involve families as volunteers and participants as much as possible. During the last two years we asked for your feedback so as to take this information into consideration when scheduling information nights, 3-way conferences and student free days. Last year we found that most parents appreciated getting those dates set early in the year and published for all to see.dates-4

This year we have done the same.
Dates are set and they will be published on the school calendar soon.

Volunteering

We want you to help in whatever capacity you can. bakingPlease consider coming in and listening to children read; help at the working bee (where you meet other parents as a bonus); you will notice that we are having a whole week of fun, writing, arts things and culture in term 3. Maybe you are a fantastic (or just beginning) story teller or writer of songs, poetry or computer code. Maybe an illustrator, movie director or media mogul (even if it is in your own dreams). How could you help? Can you bake or help with skipping? How can we help you to be involved? It doesn’t mean every day or week, but think what it would mean for your child and all children at BEPS if everyone helped once a term.

Decision-making

We want to include families as participants in school decisions, governance, and advocacy through school council and sub-committees such as, grounds, environment, buildings and education. This is an ideal time for you to become involved in the School Council. This year we have 4 vacant positions on School Council.

I would love it if you could consider nominating yourself, or someone else (with their permission of course). Nomination forms are available at the school office from today and nominations close next Friday, 10 March. This is a fantastic opportunity to be involved at BEPS.

We need to support each other and build the community around our kids in order for all of them to succeed.

Please leave your comments, ask questions or let me know what you want to know about.

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