Working with parents and the community

The best education happens when parents and schools work together. Working together as partners is fundamental to maintaining positive student behaviour in schools. NSW public schools help to promote positive behaviour and support vulnerable students by building strong links with parents, carers and school communities.

Information about this resource

This resource addresses a need to provide schools and teachers with supports and resources including creating guidelines and resources for schools to strengthen their ability to:

  • engage with parents and carers about behaviour

  • develop partnerships with parents with a focus on responsibilities for behaviour management.

This resource supports teacher and school needs by providing:

  • high quality resources to understand how to work collaboratively with parents and community members

  • strategies and a guide that support teachers to work with families and the community and prepare for difficult conversations.

Professional audience

All staff and school settings across NSW, regardless of size, context and geographic location.

This resource can be used without assistance as a stand-alone resource.

Student audience

All students P-12.

When to use

This resource can be used by executive teams, school learning and support teams and individual teachers to provide guidance on working with families and the community and when preparing for difficult conversations with families.


Can be used at any time.

System priorities and/or needs

This resource aligns with:

School Excellence Framework

  • Learning domain – Wellbeing (caring for students, a planned approach to wellbeing, individual learning needs, behaviour)

  • Teaching domain – Effective classroom practice (classroom management).

Relevant frameworks

Standards 3.7, 4.1, 4.3, 5.1, 7.3

Existing resources

Consulted with: Delivery Support teams, Aboriginal Partnerships and Outcomes, Communications and Engagement, and Inclusion and Wellbeing as part of the development of the behaviour support toolkit.

Reviewed by: Behaviour Services

Last updated: January 2024

Amirault, C., Snyder, C. (2020). Finding your way through conflict: strategies for educators. Free Spirit Publishing.

Department of Education, Skills and Employment. (2020). Family-Schools Partnership Framework. Australian Government.

Bakken, Y., Carson, N., Ohm, M. (2019). The difficult conversation: facilitating students’ professional learning and development, Universal Journal of Educational Research, 7(3), 40-40.

Davidson, K., Case, M., (2018). Building trust, evaluating voices, and sharing power in family partnership, Phi Delta Kappan, 99(6), March, 49-53.

Hill, E, N., Witherspoon, D. P., Bartz, D. (2018). Parental involvement in education during middle school: perspectives of ethnically diverse parents, teachers and students, The Journal of Educational Research, 111(1), 12-27.

Molina, S. C. (2013). Family, school, community engagement, and partnerships: an area of continued inquiry and growth, Teaching Education, 24(2), 235-238.

Miller, G. E., Lines, C., Sullivan, E., Hermantuz, K. (2012). Preparing educators to partner with families, Teaching Education, 24(2), 150-163.

Niemtus, Z. (2014). Strike a balance with challenging parents, TES Magazine, 5083, 40-41.

Sarra, C., Spillman, D., Jackson, C. (2020). High-expectations relationships: a foundation for enacting high expectations in all Australian schools, Australian Journal of Indigenous Education, 49(1). 32-45.

Shamala, T., Agbenyega, J. S. (2022). Insider perspectives on catalysing the development and use of individualised education plans. International Journal of Inclusive Education, 26(2), 160-174.

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