Parental Involvement Act - Statutory Guidance

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Closes 30 Jun 2020

Introductory questions

1a. Alongside the statutory guidance document, we have provided key principles which we think should underpin practice and approach. Do you agree that key principles should be provided within the final approved version of the guidance?

Key principles

  • Empowerment

Empowerment is about providing the necessary advice and support as well as the necessary space and time – i.e. stepping back and giving “permission” for people to make a positive contribution.

It means that parents are recognised as the primary educators of their children and that their knowledge and contribution is recognised and supported.

  • Partnership

Excellence and equity cannot be achieved by one part of the system alone. All partners need to work together in a collaborative, collegiate and respectful way, keeping the interests of children and young people front and centre.

We know that there have been important improvements in communication to and from parents, but we also know we need to make progress in supporting collaborative, two way relationships.

Partnership rests on strong relationships between parents and carers and school staff. It relies on trust, honesty, collaboration, expertise, good conversations, clear roles and, in some cases, emotional bonds.

  • Openness and Accessibility

Government, public bodies, schools and Parent Councils are accountable for the decisions that they make and the ways in which they work. This is why it is important that key decisions should be taken in consultation with the wider Parent Forum, families and communities.

It also means that parents and school staff share information with each other in an open, honest and accessible way.

  • Flexibility

All families are different and all children and young people will have individual needs.

Flexibility means adapting approaches to take account of different family circumstances and to meet the individual needs of all of Scotland’s children and young people.

1b. We are interested in your thoughts on the principles. Please provide your comments below:

2. We want the guidance to be clear - to be easy to understand and written in plain English. How clear did you find the guidance?
3. We want the guidance to be comprehensive. In other words, we want it to explain all of the relevant legal duties and powers and to expand on what those duties and powers should mean in practice. Did you think that the guidance covered all of the information that should be covered?
4a. An important task for the guidance is to explain what is meant by the terms parental involvement and parental engagement. Do you think that the guidance explain the terms parental involvement and parental engagement in an accurate way?


Parental Engagement – ‘in Learning’

Parental engagement is about parents’ and families’ interaction with their child’s learning. It can take place in the home, at school or in the community. Where it takes place is not important. The important thing is the quality of the parent’s engagement with their child’s learning, the positive impact that it can have and the interaction and mutual development that can occur as a result of that interaction.

Parental Involvement – ‘in Schooling’

Parental involvement describes the ways in which parents can get involved in the life and work of the school or the ways that parents can get involved in “schooling”. Parental involvement includes activities such as parental representation in the development of policies, improvement plans and key decisions as well as attending school events, parental consultations or parents evenings.

4b. Do you have any comments about the way that we have defined the key terms parental involvement and engagement?