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Issues around diversity and change
New knowledge about effective home-school partnerships
Comparing your school’s partnerships with those of other schools
|Increasingly, New Zealand schools have students with diverse languages and cultures and diverse learning strengths and needs. Schools that succeed in raising achievement for diverse learners have close links with parents. Read more on how parents’ involvement makes a difference to educational achievement.||Successful partnerships are strengths-based and equitable, with two-way communication. Teachers’ attitudes to the idea of a partnership and the ways in which they are willing and able to share power are critical. Read more about how both teachers and parents need to understand the joint purpose and their complementary roles.||Schools may be primary, secondary, or composite, rural or urban, Māori-medium or English-medium, special or mainstream, high or low decile, and have large, medium, or small numbers.|
|Positive effects are found when teaching builds on students’ experiences and affirms their cultural and gender identity.||Partnerships that are actively planned, reviewed, and revised, using an action research model, deliver greater benefits.||Research evidence highlights the difference that the context may make to home–school partnerships. Read more about how home–school partnerships are planned in varying contexts.|
|New technologies can promote two-way communication between home and school.|
Benefits for the whole school community
Effective home–school partnerships can enable schools to:
- build positive, trusting relationships, based on two-way communication, between home and school
- ensure that home and school learning practices are complementary and that the school culture and curriculum are inclusive and culturally relevant
- use the expertise of both parents and teachers to create new learning opportunities that could not be created by one partner alone.
Parents and caregivers
|improvements in academic skills, including literacy||opportunities to overcome any barriers that prevent them supporting their children’s education||opportunities to find out their students’ prior knowledge and skills||opportunities to discuss directions and issues relating to the school’s curriculum in a collaborative way|
|more regular attendance at school||opportunities to find out about the curriculum||opportunities to access help, resources, and support from parents||opportunities to find out about community resources and to access them for the school|
|more positive attitudes toward school and learning||opportunities to ensure that the school’s practices relating to its home-school partnerships are those known to be most effective|
|improvements in social skills and in behaviour||personal benefits, such as extensions of their knowledge, interests, and friendship network||personal benefits, such as extensions of their knowledge, interests, and friendship network||enhanced student outcomes at their school|
|improved or enhanced relationships with parents, siblings, teachers, and school leaders||improved or enhanced relationships with their children||improved or enhanced relationships with parents||improved or enhanced relationships with the parent community|
|an enhanced sense of personal or cultural identity|
Research and evidence
Reading and/or discussing the research about home–school partnerships gives you up-to-date information about how home-school partnerships can improve students’ achievement and empower parents and school staff.
Establishing your school’s needs
When you are ready to establish your school’s specific needs, a self-audit tool can help you establish your current strengths and any gaps.
When you have the information you need, and a clear picture of what is most important in the eyes of the school community, you can develop a vision, make decisions about priorities, and create and implement an ongoing plan.