Communicating with parents and carers
Effective communication and collaboration with parents and carers are key to developing positive partnerships and learning experiences for students.
Schools should interact with parents and carers to advise them of their child’s progress to enhance students’ learning experience and outcomes. Outlined are some suggested methods in which schools can communicate with parents and carers about their child’s engagement with the curriculum.
Parent/teacher interviews provide an opportunity for parents and carers to meet with teachers and to discuss aspects of their children’s learning. Interviews also provide the teacher with an opportunity to provide constructive advice on how a parent or carer can best support the child’s progress at school. Interviews commonly occur after the biannual written reporting periods, however, are not a requirement as part of this reporting process.
Review meetings provide opportunities for parents and carers to discuss their children’s learning throughout the year. These meetings may be requested at any point in the year by parents and/or carers, teachers or the student. Review meetings may be used to support the development of personalised learning plans and personalised learning pathways as well as progress checks for these plans.
A three-way learning conference is a discussion between the student, parents and/or carers and the teacher. The student has a voice, and shares what they are learning at school, working with the teacher and parents and/or carers to recognise the learning that has occurred and to set future learning goals. Throughout the conference, each participant is encouraged to ask questions, provide feedback and support to the student, and to share their thoughts and ideas on the current situation and on what future goals would like to work towards.
Emails are a valuable communication tool that can provide regular, personalised, and reliable communication. All department employees are provided with email accounts to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of communication. School-based protocols should be established to support effective use of email as a form of communication.
Schools can access a range of online learning applications provided by the department to communicate student learning. Platforms can include a variety of tools, such as the ability to share students’ learning via photos and messages. Such platforms can provide more informal ways to celebrate students’ learning and to provide short and instant communication with parents and carers. The use of any third-party platforms should be in line with the department's advice on using third-party online applications in schools (staff only).
Sample advice and information that can be circulated to parents and carers to inform them of the various ways your school may communicate with them. This can be adapted to suit your school’s context.
As a school community, we value the relationship we have with our parents and carers. Together we will be better able to support the learning journey of our students. We welcome opportunities to partner with you and to discuss your child’s learning throughout the year and encourage you to contact your child’s teacher/s if you wish to discuss their progress and learning goals.
There are many ways that [insert name of school] communicates and partners with our school community, including:
- parent/teacher interviews, face-to-face or online
- three-way learning conferences
- email updates
- online platforms, such as Google Classroom
- review meetings.
To answer questions or to discuss your child’s learning, please contact the school:
- email [insert school’s email]
- phone [insert school’s phone number].