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5 Ways to Help Create a Positive Connection Between Parents and Teachers

Creating a strong bond between parents and teachers is crucial for supporting a young person’s overall growth and development. When both home and school life work together harmoniously, this has the added benefit of enhancing the educational experience, which supports pupil academic performance and emotional well-being. Here are five of our practical strategies to strengthen the connection between parents and teachers, to help develop a collaborative environment for everyone.

1. Understanding Different Perspectives

It’s critical to recognise the varied upbringings, values, and expectations that both teachers and parents bring to the classroom. Mutual respect and understanding can be reached through honest and compassionate conversation. While parents should value educators’ knowledge and commitment, teachers should also take into account what parents are looking for and listen to their concerns for their child.

This approach also means not only acknowledging diversity but actively seeking to understand the factors that influence how both parents and school look at education and child development.

2. Setting Up Effective Communication Channels

At Harrow International School Hong Kong, we always try to keep the lines of communication between home and school open and accessible as much as possible, as it is essential to the efficient exchange of information. Making use of established channels such as email, phone conversations, newsletters, and meetings guarantees that parents are kept up to date on their child’s development.

Other channels that may work for some parents include online portals or mobile apps specifically designed for parent-teacher communication or any means to streamline updates on academic progress, extracurricular activities, and even health and wellness initiatives. Hosting virtual town hall meetings or webinars allows for real-time interaction and feedback, breaking down physical barriers and accommodating parents with busy schedules or limited mobility. By diversifying communication channels, schools can ensure that every parent feels informed, involved, and valued in their child’s educational journey.

3. Promoting a Collaborative Culture

One way to enhance collaboration is to encourage joint initiatives that involve parents and teachers in decision-making. Whether through workshops or committees, involving both parties in planning enhances transparency and inclusivity. It is, therefore, possible for schools to develop customised interventions that cater for diverse pupil needs, enriching the learning experience for all involved.

Creating a collaborative culture goes beyond just attending workshops or being part of committees. It’s about helping parents and teachers feel like they belong and have a stake in the school. This can be done by working together to create learning materials or organise community events where families and educators collaborate on projects that directly impact the school. For example, starting school environmental or sustainability projects can make people feel proud and united while addressing shared concerns. Mentorship programs or peer support networks also encourage learning and growth between experienced teachers and new parents.

4. Encouraging Positive Feedback

Promoting positive feedback loops is also crucial. Teachers should communicate with parents to celebrate achievements and strengths, boosting motivation. Parents’ insights are valuable in shaping personalised strategies for academic and emotional growth. Encouraging positive feedback is not just about highlighting achievements; it’s about cultivating a culture of appreciation and constructive dialogue. This means actively seeking input from parents on their child’s progress, strengths, and areas for improvement, and integrating this feedback into personalised learning plans. By ensuring open dialogue and feedback loops, parents and teachers work together to nurture each child’s potential.

5. Embracing Flexibility

Finally, embrace flexibility. At Harrow International School Hong Kong, we recognise that education is constantly evolving, and adaptability is essential for both parents and teachers. Being adaptable allows for creative solutions to challenges that arise. Establishing a culture of flexibility enables quick responses to evolving needs, ensuring that the parent-teacher partnership remains strong in the face of change.

Embracing flexibility requires a willingness to adapt to changing circumstances and needs while remaining steadfast in core values and goals. This means being open to experimenting with new teaching methods, curriculum approaches, or parental engagement strategies based on feedback and evolving educational research.

Source: The Eight Ps of Parent Engagement: National Education Association

How Can We Help Pupils to Reach Their Potential?

Building a positive relationship between parents and teachers is crucial for pupil success. By keeping the focus on learning, encouraging dialogue and constructive criticism, and adopting a flexible approach, educational institutions can establish a nurturing atmosphere in which all pupils can flourish. Our approach is to give each pupil the best chance of reaching their full potential, which means that they must be properly equipped for the future. To support this goal, parents and educators are required to form a strong alliance.