8.1 Creating bonds between the school and home
Parents, particularly those of children with disabilities, are often afraid to come to their child’s school. However, if communications between parents and teachers were easier, teachers would learn to know the children and their needs better and quicker, which would allow children to progress more rapidly.
In Case study 12: Mrs Dalok’s School Board Meeting in the chapter ‘An appropriate support for all’, when talking about a pupil with a visual impairment Mrs Dalok, the headteacher says: ‘We will meet his parents to have more information on his condition and to ask whether he might need notebooks with thicker lines for writing.’ Meeting the parents will enable us to know the real extent of the disability and to be able to, if needs be, together with the parents, work towards a more rapid and precise diagnosis. This will help to put in place appropriate support structures for the pupil. If parents and teachers unite their efforts to support the progress of the child and value him, the child’s self-esteem and self-confidence will be enhanced. Parents and teachers collaborate to strengthen specific aspects of the child’s learning.
Developing strategies to create bonds between school and home is therefore an important aspect of the work of the school to support all children.
Activity 37: Creating bonds between school and home
This activity will allow teachers to start collecting ideas to improve communication between school and home.
Reflect on the following questions:
- What types of events attract parents and members of the community to the school and enable an exchange between them and the teachers?
- Can teachers visit parents and members of the community? In which circumstances?
- What do you, and what do teachers and other staff members do, so that parents are encouraged to come back over and over again to school?
- Who are the pupils whose parents do come and who are those whose parents never come? Are there particular reasons that prevent the latter from coming to school?
- What does the school do to encourage the parents that never come to start coming?
To attract parents to the school and to tell them about their children’s progress, you have probably already thought of events like meetings and parents’ evenings, open days, environment study activities or school projects involving the community. Have you thought that some parents might be invited to share their expertise and talents with the class? Some others will be interested in coming to learn new things with their children or even on their own or to use some equipment that the school has; for example, a sewing machine, a computer, etc.