Teacher listening to studentsWe know that communication between school and home is really important. I wrote a couple of weeks ago that parents and carers should get in touch with school at any time if they have questions or concerns about their child’s progress. In turn, our staff will at least acknowledge an email or phone call within 24 hours and will then set up a longer phone conversation or provide more detailed feedback as soon as is possible. We recognise that there may be the odd exception to this, particularly if a member of staff is absent for any reason, but this is something we aim to ensure is the case so that communication is as good as it can be.

We have had a number of Parents’ Evenings already this year and we know that these are invaluable. We also know that making appointments can be problematic when teachers teach several classes in a particular year group and also that the process of setting up the appointments is not always straightforward. We are currently reviewing how Parents’ Evenings operate and would welcome any feedback. We are certainly considering moving to an online appointments system for next year and you may have other thoughts about how Parents’ Evenings could be improved – suggestions for consideration are very welcome.

Linked to this focus on communication is reporting to parents and carers which we are also reviewing. The current system has many strengths with three reporting points in the year ensuring that progress and assessment information go home regularly. One of these is a Review – the written report with comments – and we would welcome thoughts on how effective parents and carers find these documents. They do provide detailed feedback but this feedback is also available in marking and assessment in books and folders and verbally at Parents’ Evenings in more immediate and relevant forms. The Reviews take a considerable amount of time to write and this time could be spent on the planning and preparation of lessons and on marking and assessment. It could also be the case that for the younger year groups an additional Parents’ Evening replaces the Review to provide the immediate verbal feedback which we know is valued. Again, thoughts and feedback very welcome on this one.

As a school we strive to get communication as “right” as we can and your feedback is very much a part of how we look to consider change and developments moving forward.