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The Ultimate Parental Engagement Guide
27/05/2021 @ 11:00 - 12:00 BST
“Parental involvement in the form of ‘at-home good parenting’ has a significant positive effect on children’s achievement and adjustment even after all other factors shaping attainment have been taken out of the equation. In the primary age range the impact caused by different levels of parental involvement is much bigger than differences associated with variations in the quality of schools. The scale of the impact is evident across all social classes and all ethnic groups” (Desforges 2003).
There is a wealth of evidence showing the positive impact of parental involvement on children’s achievements.
You may also hear the phrase, ‘parental engagement’ used synonymously. Although there are debates to be had about what falls into each definition. A parent may be very much involved in their child’s education and wellbeing at home. Yet the school may not see that the parent is engaged with them.
Parental engagement is usually parents and school working as a team. Working towards the same end goals for the child.
Although schools may also seek to involve parents more in school life as a whole. Parental involvement revolves around a sense of “doing’ something. Either at home or in school.
Parental engagement revolves around the partnership of school and parent working together. This may look, simply, like good 2-way communication.
In this webinar we want to look at the different areas and ways a school may wish to both engage with and involve parents, to benefit pupil and family outcomes.
If you missed the live webinar, take a listen to the recording below:
Melanie Hi, everybody, thank you for joining us today. My name is Melanie Evans. I’m a former primary teacher across the whole primary phase, as well as the early years. I’m working for Learning Ladders now in an education capacity, looking at the product development and really supporting all of the teams and our schools in this setting up the Learning Ladders. Today, we have a webinar about parental engagement.
First of all, thinking about parental engagement historically. So, we know there are conversations in schools between teachers, conversations with senior leaders. We have lots of different conversations that go on within schools. But one of the more difficult relationships and challenges we have is the conversations that we’re trying to engage with parents. So, looking historically, we know that within every school there are parents with differing needs and barriers to communication. So, thinking about language barriers, particularly for our international schools as well as other needs; the physical ability to be at school to have these conversations, we’ve got a barrier there for people who can’t be at the pick-up. We’re talking to a whole range of adults within a child’s life. Sometimes we’re putting notes into book bags, we’re talking to after school provision to pass on messages. So, we need to look at the traditional methods of parental engagement, having a look and seeing where the challenges are around those and what we can do to move on from those forms of communication.
We have the parents evenings traditional structure. So, parents coming in after a long workday, teachers speaking to parents at the end of the day as well. And that short exchange, formerly the broadcasting of how a child is doing. We have the pupil reports, traditionally sent out at the end of the year and then there’s the culture of communication to think about. So thinking about how typically we communicate with parents if there is a problem. So, if you’ve been on the other end as a parent on the playground with the teacher walking towards you, quite often, the parent feels phew! once you’ve heard what they have to say, because quite often a lot of the interactions, particularly pick up and drop off, can be when a problem has occurred. So rather than exchanging about the learning, often it’s about an incident that’s happened at school, somebody falling over, or a medical incident that’s happened. Not so much that culture of discussing learning on that everyday basis.
But the silver lining of the pandemic (there’s not been many silver linings), but one of the silver linings to the pandemic has been the shift in conversation with parents and the engagement and role that parents have taken in learning. And that has really changed. We have the children at home for huge periods of time. So particularly in the UK, we know that we had a three or four month period where the parents were that child’s primary teacher in that period of time. They have all of this information about their child’s learning and now suddenly they have given their child back to the school. And there could be a sense of relief of, ‘my job here is one, I’ve done my best but it’s over to the school now’. But we do have this opportunity as these parents are engaged. They’re understanding the learning. They have a new appreciation as well of the role of a teacher in their child’s learning.
So, the unique opportunity that the lockdown has given us and a survey that we’ve done in collaboration with Twinkl parents found that seventy three percent of parents are now feeling more involved in their child’s education after the period of help in learning at home. Eighty four percent saying that they have a better understanding of what their child is learning. So, we have a shift in conversation. There’s now more focus around engagement with learning and moving away from some of the typical interaction that we may have with parents around the communication of incidents in school. Practical elements such as don’t forget PE kits in notes in the book bags and things like that.
We’re looking for more specific, objective level conversations going on with the parents moving away from that general overview at the end of the year in the reports, in the parents evenings towards more of a consistent pattern of sharing those objectives as the children are learning throughout the year. And then a need for upskilling those parents and a way that that is realistic for teachers to be able to do this remotely. But at scale, you can’t possibly with the telephone conversations that sometimes have traditionally happened, a teacher can’t possibly maintain the 30 conversations in that way, 30 different conversations at hand over a drop of about different objectives for each child. So there needs to be a way to scale this support and information so that we’re engaging more consistently, but still in a realistic way for the teachers workloads.
So, some of the key questions to think about now we’ve come to the end of lockdown in lots of areas though we know that some of our international schools do continue to have a blended learning approach. Looking back at the parental engagement during that time the first place to start could be, what worked well in the lockdown? And what didn’t work? Has your school stopped to ask the parents yet how they found the interactions in the communications? There may have been a need to start using some different technology. Perhaps you needed to find a new communication system. You could’ve used Google hang out, Zoom for example. You may have used other type of systems for sharing evidence and work, for example. How did the parents find that? What did the children learn from some of these new strategies that you put in place?
So, if you’re using a system that is sharing home learning tasks, were the children successful in their learning and accessing the task that you’re setting on those systems? Think about the resilience, flexibility and independent learning as well, the way that you were communicating with parents and the engagement, were the children building that resilience and independence in their learning? And how can we take that forward if we found our pupils in our school are now more independent because they had to take more ownership of that learning when they were at home? Have you found ways to replicate this and continue this in the parental engagement and home learning tasks moving forward? So really thinking about there’s lots of different surveys out there and technology that can support you in sending out these kind of surveys to try and get that feedback from the parents or the adults at home capable of.
Schools also need to consider the time constraints that parents may have. Were the parents able to engage in the live lessons that took place? Was work submitted onto the system? What type of environment were children working in? Whether the pupils were learning at home and how even things down to the Internet connections, is there good access to Internet for sending out continuing send up home learning tasks digitally? And then that idea about how is you going to continue to train children for hopefully not another example of a blended learning situation in the future, but for that continued home learning that does continue throughout the whole of the primary schooling.
So we’re directing schools to consider how they are preparing children to continue that ethos of developing independence and ownership of their learning when they’re at home. At Learning Ladders, we talk about creating opportunities for conversation, and if anybody’s been on a webinar with our founder Matt, he was also a former teacher and started Learning Ladders for the very impact of the parental engagement impact on the children in his class. When he started sharing explicit learning objectives and focusing on that parental engagement, he saw a real difference in learning outcomes and that was where Learning Ladders was born out of. He particularly likes to refer to education as a conversation and not a transfusion. So that quote from Sir Ken Robinson, and that really is the underlying theme behind the Learning Ladders opportunities for conversation.
It was interesting, I recently read an NHS document that was focused on communication and language with children and how to create these opportunities for conversation. And what really struck me was perhaps we need to be applying some of these principles to conversation in general with adults as well. So, thinking about are we giving parents the means to communicate and have a conversation with us? Are we giving them reasons to have these conversations as well as creating opportunity for the parents to have these conversations?
When we think of ‘the means for conversation’, then we are thinking about a way to communicate. So, we’ve got the face to face meeting. So perhaps it could be at handover, the traditional parents evening or through telephone conversations. But is there a way that we could merge some of the new systems that are out there and technology to support us in giving the parents the means to communicate and remove some of those barriers in that communication? The reason to communicate, parents thinking about what is my child learning about? Giving parents a reason to communicate with teachers. Perhaps the reason is to find out how they can help that child at home. Perhaps it’s how is my child doing with their learning now that they’re back in school and also looking at that feedback. Another reason the parents could reach out to communicate could be to provide feedback of the learning from home. So, are we creating these reasons for conversation with parents in our school.
And then opportunities, so not just, as I say, the parents evening, but other opportunities for other school to share learning goals that children are working on, to chat through technology systems, homework evidence and reports. And Ladders at Home, which is our parent portal, really focuses on giving the opportunity for conversation through homework, evidence and reports. If we give parents specific things to communicate around, then we’re creating more opportunities for those conversations to take place. In a system such as Learning Ladders, we have a parent portal to be able to include all parents, no matter those barriers of language, time and access. We have one login for a system, and that doesn’t matter if you’ve got multiple siblings across the school. So giving parents the means to communicate with whatever teacher that child is working within school for all of their children in one place.
The parent portal can be accessed on any device, again, removing some of those barriers and the accessibility around it. So Ladders at Home, for example, can be translated into over one hundred languages. We’re making the means to communicate accessible through this one platform, and it’s consistent as well. So, with our parent portal, whether your child’s starting a nursery or whether they’re in year seven, creating that consistent way to engage with parents through a parental engagement system such as a parent portal. So that’s what I’m going to show you today, how Learning Ladders is supporting that parental engagement.
And one way that parental engagement is supported is sharing explicit learning goals with the parents. We know that in order for the parents to be able to support their child, the conversations need to take place. And if you’re as a parent, you’re receiving your child home from school and you’re saying to them, what are you learning about today? And they say, not much! It doesn’t give much for the parents to go on to continue that articulation of the learning that’s happening in school. So that’s why in our parent portal, we’re sharing the learning goals as the children are working on them and parents can see whether or not the objective is complete or if it’s in progress and the parent can talk to the child about that. You can even see when whether the objective is from a prior year so that you know whether or not children are working on objectives from outside the year group. So, it’s a springboard for that conversation for the parent to then have the information to be able to talk about the learning with that child. And as I said previously, these learning goals can be translated into over one hundred languages. So, depending on the parent at home, the different languages, for example, those can be translated to them from the different languages with a click of a button. So, it’s accessible and sharing that explicit learning so that we can actually have the engagement with learning rather than just with the traditional day to day routines of children in school.
In order for these conversations at home to take place, what we know is that children need to start this process in school. With parental engagement the first step is practicing the articulation of learning with the adults in school. And that’s why we need the pupils to be taking co-ownership of their learning. The pupils need to be aware exactly what they’re working on. So, in Learning Ladders, we have pupil statements just at the top here. The ticks will show whether they’re at the beginning of understanding of that objective, whether they’re developing it or whether they’ve understood that to a greater depth. For example, the teacher can sit next to the child, and they can share the objectives that have already come, those that are going to be working on in the next few weeks. I’m really talking to the child about independence. What can you do to support yourself in this objective, to move your learning forward? How can I support you as your teacher in moving on your understanding? And here is the curriculum journey that we’re going to go on together. That way, the pupils are taking ownership of that learning.
We have other ways to do this through the system. So, for example, in the bottom corner here, we have the pupil booklets. So, these can be ordered for the maths. reading and writing. So, schools often make them for key stage one so that that booklet will stay with that child throughout year one and two. It’s a really clear, engaging visualisation of the next steps in learning the objectives that they’ve achieved so that actually they can take some independence and say, I think I’ve achieved this objective, now I understand this objective. And perhaps they will even instigate these conversations with teachers, giving the teachers the feedback and that pupil voice that they feel that they’ve met an objective. So, we think about the parental engagement, about what parents do at home with their child but it’s about really thinking about what’s happening in school that’s enabling pupils to practice articulating their learning so that their parents know the objectives they’re working on. The pupils come home and they’re aware of what they’re working on. And all adults in a child’s life are saying the same thing at the same time, in the same way.
It’s that consistency for everybody involved in that child’s learning. And then not just sharing those objectives. We’re thinking about the opportunities for conversation that you may have. So, thinking about, for example, a parent who’s received those learning goals, I now know what my child is learning about in school, but I don’t have the confidence to be able to support my child with that. The language isn’t familiar to me. There’s a lot of jargon around education that needs unlocking. So, things like, oh, working on split digraphs. This week we’re working on a number of bonds to 10. Now, when we were at school thinking back, not everything is the same. I know. Certainly, when I was at school, phonics and phonemes and digraphs, those terms were not used. So, we have to put ourselves in the shoes of the parents who haven’t heard this language before, as we’re all very familiar with these terms. But that jargon is a barrier to the parents being able to support their child at home. So, what can we do about it? Can we send out 30 different emails explaining objectives to the different parents who don’t understand the different terms? Am I going to create a video that’s going to take me a very long time to explain each objective as they go along? Is that practical or realistic as a teacher? Or can I look to systems who have in place support such as Learning Ladders when the objective is shared? You can click on articles and it will take you to qualified teachers understanding and explanation of what the objective means, why it’s important, how it’s taught in school. Here are some examples of websites that your child could go to challenge them, to support them if they’re not understanding the subjective and straight away, we have parents feeling more confident, upskill and ready to support their child.
We’re really looking at how parents perceive the learning, and we are all products of our own feelings around our educational experiences. And if that experience was of no understanding of panic and anxiety around maths then supporting our child in subjects will cause stress. How can we support the parents to become involved in their child’s maths learning in a positive way, feeling confident and in control, and of explaining to their child exactly what it means? So, we have the support of schools across the reading, maths, writing objectives, and they can be translated into over the hundred languages. We’re making them accessible to everybody to consume.
In terms of flexibility as a teacher, sometimes you’d like to create an article, perhaps around using Numicon, which is a resource in maths, for example. And as a teacher, I could go to the door, I could print out a letter and put it in the book bag. Whether or not it will reach the parents I don’t know. I could talk to parents one to one, write an email, or perhaps I could utilise the technology to write my own article about this is the Nunicom we use in school. It’s a specific resource. This is what we’re doing with it. And this is how you could talk to your child at home about recognition of the colours. So, we allow our schools to create their own articles as well. Sharing evidence as well is another way to give opportunity for conversations and reasons for parents to open up those conversations.
Moving on to the evidence that we collect naturally as teachers, as we’re going along across the subjects, why not share that evidence with parents in a portfolio that will come through? So, this might be a video, it may be a photograph or even an audio recording of a child reading in school, for example. And that gives the parent an opportunity to have a window and insight into the learning that’s going on in the classroom with that child and a springboard for conversation when that child comes home to discuss that moment in learning and to trigger that conversation for the child to say, oh, yes, we’ve been learning about number bonds in school and this is what I was doing in this piece of a piece of writing here or my piece of work or in that photograph. Sharing that evidence with parents at home gives them an opportunity to have conversations not only with their own child and to celebrate learning with their child as well as successes, but to be able to have opportunities of conversation with the teacher.
So, we have the two way conversations around the evidence. If I’m receiving a piece of evidence of my child using money in a role play situation at school, I may want to feed back to the teacher. Actually, I saw them using coins in the shop this weekend and they calculated the change that they were going to get back. So, it’s really having that two way information and valuing the information that the parents can feed back to us about how they’re applying those skills in real life context. Sharing that evidence is a really important journey.
Another way to create opportunities for conversation with the parents is looking at the home learning tasks that we set. So, during the lockdown periods you may have had to find systems to be able to share this home learning. At Learning Ladders we’ve been banging the parents engagement drum for a very long time. Parental engagement has been core to the Learning Ladders product since Matt created it. So, we already had lots of these systems in place for sharing and learning. One of the new developments was the Self marking Homework. And as a former teacher myself, I think that this is one of the elements that is particularly useful for feeding into planning and learning.
So as a teacher, I can create a home learning task. I can tell the system the questions, the answers and what the correct answer is. That enables the child to get immediate feedback and a result of how they got on in that task. They’ll get a percentage, and they also get a score, and the parent can see that as well. So already I know as a child, I didn’t quite understand that rather than that traditional process of handing in homework and getting feedback a week later. The teacher has to look at 30 pieces of homework, does the child ever get that specific feedback and is it too late? A week later? We know that the best type of feedback is immediate feedback. And that’s why something like the self marking homework is really effective.
Not only that, but we also have the pupil voice as well on reflection. So, as I’m submitting the answers to that question, I’m able to using some accessible smiley faces and textbox to respond to my teacher, to say whether or not I found the homework easy. Was it hard for me? Did I enjoy that particular topic? What did I find difficult? And the parent and the teacher can then view these comments within the Learning Ladders system and also the results for the multiple choice questions. So, I can then analyse a class, I haven’t yet taught this topic, perhaps I’m going to use a multiple choice homework to find out the prior knowledge of the class I’m teaching. What that will do is I can see each question, how children have access that and whether or not they have got this right or wrong, which questions and look for patterns. And actually, if 90 percent of the class have all got all of the questions right, perhaps I need to look at the pitch of the lesson for next week. If it’s coming back that there’s a real gap, a misconception in knowledge across the class then I need to adapt my planning next week or moving forward as well to address the facts that we have lots of misconceptions in that particular area. So, it can be a really useful assessment tool to try and gather prior information and knowledge. But it can also be used after teaching to see children’s understanding in an independent context when they go to apply it on their own at home.
And the very management of setting homework within a system like our parent portal that we have is that you’re even able to say which children have access to homework and which children haven’t. If we know consistently that Liliane, for example, isn’t accessing the homework, it’s giving a means for that conversation. For the two way chats, I can then comment and message the parent. They can message me saying we haven’t quite understood this. This is why we haven’t access is homework this week. I’ve been really busy at work. We have no Internet. I don’t have access to the technology. These kind of conversations that then come up that you may not get in the traditional homework that might just slip under the radar. It really gives you that insight. You could initiate the conversation with the parent and say, how can we support you in accessing this type of learning? We’ve noticed that Liliane hasn’t been able to access the home learning for the past two weeks. Is there something that we can do to support you? And already that’s opening up the conversation for Lillian’s parent to get that feedback about the environment at home, her ability and time to be able to scaffold her child. Perhaps we’ll see that there’s gaps in confidence and we can then support Lillian’s parent towards the articles to support her understanding upskill her confidence levels to be able to then feel that she can access the homework. So, we’re being able to speak to parents, even if they’re not the ones that drop off and pick up, it’s the nannies or au pairs we’re really getting through to the parent to be able to find out and unpick what the barriers are to accessing the home learning tasks.
As well as the Self marking homework, we have all files that you could upload. So, if you’ve already got a specific homework, that’s been created, Learning Ladders enables the teachers to upload that file and share it with a particular pupil or, the whole class. Open-Ended tasks such as this weekend, if you can go on a learning walk in an environment, notice the change in seasons and bring back your thoughts on Monday. So, there’s Open-Ended tasks as well. If you’ve created a video through a different site and a video platform that’s holding that video, you can drop the link in to a homework and say watch this video about this or a link to a useful game. Access this game here, the challenge one. And if you’re finding a little bit difficult, perhaps you could try this game. So, differentiating the homework as well. So, lots of options to set homework within the same system. Then parents get in contact with the teacher to unpick if there’s any problems, if they need support then signposting off to the other support that you have within the portal. And that really supports the teacher in building a picture of learning.
Looking at your formative assessment, all in the same system as your parental engagement system and saying, actually, this group of children all started at the beginning understanding of this concept, I’m going to send out the homework, encourage the parent to give me feedback, and that’s going to feed back into my assessment of the child. If the parent is then coming back saying they understood this really well, they work independently. You are then getting more of a picture of learning to be able to inform your formative assessment and you’re planning for next week and then in the Gap Analysis looking for those gaps, thinking about your homework on a more targeted level. We don’t need to send the same homework to the whole class. We can use the formative assessment to identify groups of children with a similar need who are all needing support to be achieving that objective. Similarly, all those children who are at a developing understanding that we need to move towards more of a greater depth and then targeting our homework so that we are accessing that differentiation challenge and support.
We’re thinking about those opportunities for conversation, so that’s why our communications are around certain features. So, the homework, the evidence, the pupil reports, and then that’s all managed within a notification center. Another really important aspect to think about parental engagement is it needs to be manageable for your teachers. So, it’s OK having that open communication where parents can message about anything, but that opens up a teacher to be able to reply to maybe 50 messages across a week from parents asking about timetables, about PE lessons next week. If we’re really keeping that communication around the learning, then we’re giving that message to all schools and to the parents that we’re interested in the learning that you’re doing with your children at home. And we can manage that within the notifications because we can see what the communication was centered around. Was it centered around pupil reports I sent out or a particular homework or a particular piece of evidence. So, it’s always keeping that parental engagement realistic for the teacher’s workload and not overwhelming with that communication.
So, in Learning Ladders, we have sharing the goals as we go along, we’ve got the articles to support the parents and we’re doing these home learning tasks, this ongoing parental engagement. More formal communication through pupil reports are normally printed reports put into the book bags to be sent home. What if there was a better way to be able to do this remotely at scale. So digitalising reports and saving teachers time so that they can communicate in a more clear and explicit way about objectives.
All reports enable you to customise the logo for your school, the name of the school, even if you’ve got a school motto. That’s really nice to get that kind of feeling of belonging and ownership of the reports. And you can use these reports on an interim basis. So, we have schools that use them termly because what we find is if we’re sharing this information as we go along, being able to give some kind of a summary within maybe the core subjects on a termly basis is another way for the parents and the teachers to communicate on an ongoing basis rather than just at the end point at the end of the year.
In our reports, the strengths and the challenges are pulled through from the formative assessment we’re already adding on the system. This is why it is a huge benefit to using an assessment system that’s also got the parental engagement as part of the system. But really thinking about whatever system you’re using, are you using your assessment to take away some of the workload around the reports? I think parents are often left a little bit dissatisfied when they feel that reports are bit generic, that there’s nothing specific that they can work on with their child, or if there is something specific, it’s taken the teacher 30 to 40 hours to write 30 reports on average. So, it is taking that huge amount of time to get that personalisation and those specific objectives in. So why not automate that process using a system that generates these pupil reports and pulls through the strengths and the challenges from the formative assessments on the system and include more than one? You can have multiple strengths and challenges for each subject if you wish. The teacher comment is still there and sharing that piece of evidence means you can have a photograph or what I think is really lovely as a parent perspective as well is the ability to even have a video shared per subject. And I think that’s a great insight and a tool for communication, not only for the parent with the child, but for the parent to be able to comment back to the teacher and give their feedback on what they’ve seen. So, these kind of reports are personal and contextual to the school. So, if you have particular aims or I know we work with high performance learning schools that work on particular attributes, for example, you’re even able to report on the custom attributes of your school. So, if you talk about resilience, cooperation, you can report on those things, because after all that is the reason why a parent may have chosen your school, for those attributes. So, reporting back about those attributes, it heightens the importance of them and also enables the parents to know what type of moral and attitudes are being developed in school so that they can also support those morals attitudes towards learning at home with their child. Thinking about some of the work that goes into these reports, there is still a place for predefined comments that you may want to use across multiple reports. There are comments that are reflective for children who are finding something challenging, perhaps their comments that apply to children who needed greater depth. In Learning Ladders, you were able to upload those comments from a file. You might have already import them into the system to be able to then put into the report even when you need them.
All of that information that I’ve shown you can be achieved in different systems, perhaps you’ve got lots of different systems going on at the moment. Perhaps you’re using one for assessment, one for parental engagement, another for setting home learning tasks. What I would say, though, about the parents engagement is really think about whatever you’re doing, is having the child at the centre of all of the adults around that child saying the same thing, at the same time? We want the parents understanding what their child’s learning and to know exactly how to help at home and take the stress out of that home learning, because if it’s more of a positive experience for everybody, it’s more likely that we’re going to replicate that home learning with the child at home. We need the teachers knowing exactly what the child needs for every lesson. And part of that is the feedback that you get from the teachers and the senior leaders in school to know exactly what’s happening, those interventions that are happening and are being informed by what we’re hearing from the parental contribution as well, and that parental involvement in learning and the engagement.
So not just the reading in class, the volunteering that’s involvement with school. And they’re all really important aspects we’ve got helping our children with homework, making sure they’ve submitted their homework. But the true engagement of learning is what we’re thinking about at Learning Ladders. Are we providing those opportunities for conversation to give the moral support, the guidance to develop attitudes at home, as well as make progress in the learning at home? So whatever parental engagement system you’re using, ensuring that as well as the traditional methods of notes and book bags, telephone calls, updates about Sports Day next week, we’re also engaging the parents in these learning conversations because we know at Learning Ladders research shows parents want to be involved, 93 percent on the survey saying they want more information about what the child’s learning, why, how it’s taught. So, the parental engagement that we provide needs to be supporting the parents with those things and looking at the research as well. When we think about the why, we have research such as parents engagement needs to be part of a whole school strategy, not a bolt on activity, OK, it’s not something that we can suddenly start doing at the end of a year. The strategy has to be on the needs analysis. So, as I spoke about at the beginning of the webinar, have you looked back at the parental engagement? Have you assessed the needs of the parents in your particular cohorts and had the feedback from them about what they need from the school to be able to support their child? It needs to be focused on students learning all those other useful things, like reading with children, finding out when the money’s due and things like that, that all important communications. But in order to see the impact on learning outcomes, the parental engagement needs to be around explicit learning objectives, and there needs to be regular reviews that involve parents. We’re not just broadcasting how a child is doing in their learning, we’re actually communicating and having conversations about the learning that’s ongoing throughout the year and something that Learning Ladders the system. And it may be really important for you to look at the systems you’ve got in place.
Are those systems giving consistency across your internal team? OK, so what I mean by that is when we have a school join us, we put a lot of time and effort into the onboarding to ensure the buy-in from all teachers. Right at the beginning, this is our strategy, this is how we’re going to communicate with parents. And that’s going to be the same whether you’re in year one or in year six, those parents are going to receive that support, that explicit learning objectives and that feedback to support them with their learning at home. So, again, during onboarding sessions, we talk through the best way to utilise that parents engagement. We have the teacher training and the senior leadership training and all of the support underneath that. That enables all of the teachers in school to be consistent in their parents engagement. So that could be CPD webinars. For example, at Learning Ladders, we had lots of free webinars, monthly and weekly that teachers can go on around things like pupil reports and how to promote conversations with parents and the conversation that happens after the reports. That’s not the end of it to broadcast how the child’s doing. It’s about the conversation that that creates. And that’s why we have the two-way chats so the teachers can jump on a webinar to find out about that. It could be around using home learning tasks to generate conversation with parents. It could be about sharing evidence with parents as well. So, what’s the ongoing support like in those systems that you very quickly had to join? Are you seeing that support to be able to get that consistent approach as a school? And it’s not that. Perhaps if there’s a better way or more of a joined up system that can enable that consistency from year one all the way through to year six, for example.
So, lots of our schools use our parent platform for parents engagement, if you’re interested, there’s a website called EdTech Impact is a bit like TripAdvisor for education. We’ve got real schools on there talking about using the parent portal and how that’s had an effect on the learning outcomes of pupils. And that can be read on the EdTech impact website so check that out. It’s always better to hear it from another practitioner I find to be able to really look for the impact that it’s had on the pupils learning.
And then if you’ve watched webinar today and you’d like to arrange a demo of the system of the parent portal, we’ve got firstname.lastname@example.org is the email address or you can contact Stella directly, she’s email@example.com. Get in touch with the team. Parental engagement is what we do day in, day out. It’s been a core part of Learning Ladders from the beginning. So, we’ve really got the consistency there in the support for setting up that parental engagement, getting the buy-In from the teachers so that we have that consistent approach and those means, reasons and opportunities for conversations to take place. And that’s the built over a long time.
Now, coming to the end of the webinar, I’ll just hang around for a moment, check the Q&A. If you’d like to type them in there. I’m happy to answer those. Thank you so much for joining us today about parental engagement. Keep an eye out on the events page. We have lots of interesting webinars coming up, many of them around parental engagement.
Enjoy the rest of your day. Thank you.