Concerns over parental engagement in education

David Laws speaking at the SCHOOLS NorthEast summit.
David Laws speaking at the SCHOOLS NorthEast summit.

SCHOOLS NorthEast has called on the Government to develop a national strategy to improve parental engagement in their children’s schooling, amid concerns over the long-term impact on their education.

The charity, which represents the 1,250 schools across the region, warned that a growing number of headteachers are reporting concerns at the number of parents who are disengaging from their children’s education at a time when the Government is driving tougher standards. The issue is most acutely felt at secondary-school level where a mix of issues impacts on the level of engagement.

Mike Parker, director of SCHOOLS NorthEast, said: “The Government is focused heavily on tinkering with the education system, spending huge amounts of money overturning school structures, changing exams and tweaking performance measures in pursuit of better outcomes.

“However, little focus is placed on the importance of a strong support system around the pupil and the school that a parent can provide.”

The SCHOOLS NorthEast Summit took place last week with the keynote speaker being David Laws, executive chairman of the Education Policy Institute. The former Schools Minister said that the region’s schools do well to close the disadvantage gap, but this is relatively unknown in the rest of the country.