Parental involvement in education is not a new phenomenon. It has existed for as long as there have been schools. Aside from home, children spend most of their time at school, which means education and upbringing go hand in hand. Both teachers and parents can be seen as educators that are important for a child’s learning process. This is also called educational partnership. Close contact between parents, schools and teachers will contribute to the quality of a school and has a positive effect on the educational performance and social development of pupils.
In 2019, Vensterschool monitor rated ‘parental involvement’ with a 6,5 (out of 10) and 96% of employees rated the importance of parental involvement with a 7 or higher. During the COVID-19 lockdown, the importance of the role of parents in a child’s education became even more apparent. Schools closing meant parents had to help with (digital) remote learning, which wasn’t an easy or even feasible task for all parents. The crisis made it clear that it’s difficult for those parents to support their child, for example because of low literacy, not understanding the homework themselves, not speaking the language, or having insufficient digital skills.
We talk about parental involvement when the behavior of parents indicates they feel a shared responsibility for the educational development of their children. It concerns (emotional) involvement in the development of their child, but also the school and the teacher. The parents show interest, create conditions for doing homework and supervise their child if necessary. But they also attend parent/teacher evenings and show respect for the teacher. The school and parents work together effectively and efficiently to give a student more and more responsibility over their own development, with the goal of increasing their knowledge and social skills to shape them into self-responsible citizens.
The conditions for parental involvement are: clear information about the education system; digital skills; knowledge about “what is my child learning?”; awareness of (the importance of) educational partnership between teachers and parents. The challenge is not so much focused on parental involvement within the school, but focused on schoolwork or homework at home. The solution to the challenge should focus in particular on families living in poverty, low-educated parents, and/or non-Western families, because they tend to have difficulty supporting their children in their educational careers.
The question/challenge for startups
Contribute to increasing parental involvement, so that parents can have an active role in the educational development of their children.
– We’re looking for a sustainable solution
– We’re not looking for homework guidance, but a firm educational partnership between parents and teachers, with a focus on the home situation
– The primary audience consists of families living in poverty, low-educated parents, and/or non-Western families