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‘Bonds of trust’ broken between families and schools, says report

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‘Bonds of trust’ broken between families and schools, says report

Around a third of parents believe it’s not necessary for children to attend school every day

Almost one in three parents believe the coronavirus pandemic has shown it is not essential for children to attend school every day, according to a new poll.

The poll, conducted by YouGov for the Centre for Social Justice (CSJ) think tank into the relationship between parents and schools, found 28% felt that way and only 70% of parents are confident their child’s needs are being met – a figure which drops to 61% at secondary school.

CSJ chief executive Andy Cook said there is “fundamental work to be done in rebuilding the contract between families and schools”.

He said the polling, which questioned 1,206 parents during December 2023, showed there remains a “significant minority for whom the bonds of trust between families and schools were broken”.

“This is not a one-way street,” he said. “Parents have legitimate expectations of schools which government must help them to deliver, but as parents, we need to take responsibility for getting our kids ready for school, at school, and for keeping them engaged in school.

“Restoring the bond between parents and schools – supported by small charities and community organisations – will help us to do this.

“Failure to address this will be catastrophic for the future of our people, communities and state.”

In its report on the finding, entitled The Missing Link: Restoring the bond between schools and families, the CSJ sets out a seven-point plan which Mr Cook said puts a “focus on parental engagement and whole family support”.

The plan calls for more at least five hours of extracurricular activities each week via a “right to sport”, plus investment in youth clubs and services, mental health support and the roll out of attendance mentors.

It also recommends a review into the effectiveness of finds and prosecutions for absences, as well as creating a National Parental Participation Strategy.

Published: by Radio NewsHub

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