Communicating

Effective and good quality communication between home and school is one of the most important ways of helping children to learn and make progress, so that everyone is clear and agreed about approaches that will help children to achieve. 

Effective school-to-home and home-to-school communication is key to children's wellbeing and to their learning.

When schools communicate with parents and carers, this needs to be done in ways that suit parents. This could be

  • on the school website
  • by email or text
  • by putting notes in homework diaries
  • in formal reports
  • in face-to-face meetings
  • through social media
  • in any other ways that work for parents.

When parents communicate with schools, they need to feel welcomed and that their contribution is valued, whether they are asking questions, raising issues or making suggestions. It is very helpful when schools share clear information with parents on how best to communicate with teachers and other school staff.

Children benefit when information is shared with parents about school projects, assessments/exams, reports, and learning progress. Parents and schools develop positive relationships when communications are clear and regular, particularly about topics such as choosing or changing schools, course choice, policies or wider achievement activities. Key to this is designing effective forms of school-to-home and home-to-school communications about the school, a child’s progress and how to support learning.

Tips on communicating effectively for schools, teachers and parents groups 

For example, schools, teachers and parent groups can

  • provide language translators to assist families as needed – the translator could also be a child, parent or someone from the community
  • send home examples of the child's work each week or each month for review and comment
  • give clear and parent-friendly information on all school policies and improvement planning
  • send home positive messages about pupils on a regular basis – not just about academic achievements
  • make sure all parents know who to contact if they have questions or concerns
  • invite the Parent Council/other parents to check school communication is written in a parent-friendly way with no educational jargon.

Resources

Using Social Media for Parent Groups

Using Social Media for Parent Groups

Leaflet Members Only

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How to Set Up a Twitter Account

How to Set Up a Twitter Account

Leaflet Members Only

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Guidelines for Communicating Effectively - Email

Using email

Leaflet Members Only

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How to Set Up a Facebook Page

How to Set Up a Facebook Page

Leaflet Members Only

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Communicating with the School Community

Communicating with the School Community

Leaflet Members Only

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Effective Conversations and Meetings

How to hold effective conversations and meetings

Leaflet Members Only

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Surveys and Questionnaires

Our guide to conducting surveys and questionnaires

Leaflet Members Only

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Engaging Parents in the Parent Council and the School

Engaging Parents in the Parent Council and the School

Leaflet Members Only

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A List of Acronyms Used in Scottish Education

Unfold the mysteries of Scottish Education by reading this List of Acronyms Used in Scottish Education

Resource Members Only

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What is Partnership Schools Scotland?

Connect's explanation of its fantastic parental engagement in education Partnership Schools Scotland project What is Partnership Schools Scotland?

Leaflet Members Only

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Parent Council Health Check - Communications

Parent Council Health Check - Communications

Resource Members Only

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Simple Guide to Data Protection

Connect's Simple Guide to Data Protection to help Parent Councils and PTAs through the maze of data protection legislation and good practice

Resource Members Only

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Data Protection Policy Template

Data Protection Policy Template for Parent Councils and PTAs

Resource Members Only

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Success Stories

Parent Council Information Videos - Tynewater Primary School, Midlothian

The Tynewater Primary School Parent Council's chairperson produces short animated videos using an online app

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S1 Parent Information Evening - Trinity Academy, Edinburgh

The Parent Council gathers information that parents wished they had known in S1 to share with incoming S1 parents

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Keeping parents involved in children's progress - St John's Primary School, Edinburgh

A new approach to reporting children's progress to parents is devised

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An attractive newsletter - Trinity Academy Parent Council, Edinburgh

Trinity Academy Parent Council produces an attractive newsletter

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