Working with parents
We love working with parents, and we believe that our children really thrive when the school and families work together. Our parents are always welcome at our school, and as we improve what we do, we ask them what will make the biggest difference. Our school offers families and the community a range of services such as before and afterschool clubs.
We are dedicated to working with families to develop our children’s health and characters, so that they develop the interpersonal skills, caring attitudes and relationships, creativity, resilience, and reliability (including punctuality and attendance) that will prepare them for a fulfilling life.
We encourage participation in a variety of ways:
- in the classroom and in curriculum activities
- in developing school policies
- in special events
Communicating with Parents/Carers
We provide information to parents about the school through:-
These contain general school information but also information specific to each class, including an overview of curriculum topics and class routines.
A weekly newsletter
This is sent to parents every Friday. Spare copies are kept in the main entrance area on the parent’s information board.
School website and Blog
As well as this website Barlow Hall Primary School has a school blog. This helps to support parents and children with home learning and provides information on school.
All parents receive a copy of our homework policy in the induction pack which explains the daily, weekly and ongoing homework for each year group.
Transition meetings with parents
Each July and September teachers meet the parents of their children’s new classes which explains the following:-
- curriculum subjects covered and content
- expectations for the end of the year
- important routines
We use the Keep Kids Safe ‘Primary Contact’ texting system to inform and remind parents of events, occurrences, and appointments. We also use the texting system to ascertain the reason for a child’s absence if we are unable to speak with them on the telephone.
School will send a letter to parents to advise of any formal meetings but will also telephone parents to remind them of appointments. Sharon Drinkwater telephones parents daily to the reason for absences, to advise of any illness or accidents or to arrange impromptu or urgent meetings.
New Parents Induction Meetings
Each June the Head Teacher and Foundation Stage Team Leader or Nursery Teachers talk to parents of the children who will start in September or during the next academic year, providing information on aims, values, reading, homework, uniform and the curriculum in general.
The Head Teacher meets with all new parents on a 1-1 basis and school employs an Arabic speaking teaching assistant if translation is required for this meeting.
Staff organise a number of coffee mornings during the school year, often linked to events or activities, such as the Christmas Fair, or to host focus groups. Letters, texts and are sent out to remind parents of the coffee mornings and encourage their participation.
This is given to all new parents as their children start school and then each September thereafter. It indicates the ways that parents and the school can support each other to provide the best for the child. Parents keep the agreement and return a slip to the office to say that they have received it.
A copy of the school’s behavior policy and anti-bullying policy are also included in the information that parents receive when their children start at Barlow Hall.
Sharon Drinkwater, the School’s Attendance Support Worker, is available on a daily basis to speak with parents who require assistance with a wide range of issues, from bedtime routines and children’s attendance to personal problems which are impacting on their children.
The school has an excellent record of initiating and completing Common Assessment Frameworks (CAFs) to support families and has helped many parents to achieve the aims of the CAFs.
School has hosted a number of courses for parents including Numeracy, Literacy, computing and helping their children with their Numeracy. The courses have helped parents to boost their self-esteem and self-confidence and also helped them to gain access to further education or to gain employment.
Helping in school
School has a number of parent helpers in school, some of whom undertake specific tasks such as reading with a specific child and others who we offer places to support them through teaching assistant courses.
Parents who help in school agree times and what they will be doing with the class teacher. All parent helpers must have an enhanced DBS check which the office staff can help them to obtain. Once the check has been completed parents liaise with the class teacher about which times they might be available. Once parents receive their DBS check and have taken it to the office to have the details entered on the school’s Central Register of Evidence, they will be able to start their agreed placement.
When helping, parents must sign into the School Visitors book.
During the year we organise special school events which encourage the involvement of parents:-
- Weekly Celebration Assemblies.
- Termly Attendance Assemblies
- Annual Carols by Candlelight
- Leavers' Assembly
- Leavers' Performance
- Annual Christmas Performances
- Black History Week
- Eid Fashion Show
- Termly Celebration Assemblies linked with different faiths.
- Easter Eggstravaganza
- St. George’s Day
- Anti-Bullying Day Presentation
Responding to concerns
meet with parents if there is any concern (expressed by parent or teacher) about the child’s progress or well-being in school
make the complaints procedure clear to parents
signpost to appropriate agencies as required
offer support through the Early Help process if appropriate