Parents/Carers as Partners
Parents/carers are a child's first and most important educator. At The Downley School we value and appreciate the important role parents/carers have in supporting each child, developing them to develop a positive attitude to school and a love of learning.
Research has shown that children learn best when home and school work in partnership. There is a strong and clear link between parent/carer engagement and children's achievement
We are keen to ensure that our parents/carers are provided with opportunities to learn how to support learning in the most effective way. We therefore offer a range of activities for parents/carers to actively participate their children's education and are always appreciative of suggestions as to how we can help even more.
Parent/carer/teacher consultation evenings
Consultation evenings are held in the autumn, spring and summer terms. They are a chance for parents/carers to meet with teachers and discuss their child's learning and progress, areas in which they need extra support or additional challenge. Parents/carers are encouraged to be aware of their child's abilities through their termly reports and discuss these, there are also opportunities to discuss any concerns teachers or parents/carers have. We encourage proactive communication at all times to address concerns as soon as they happen.
Book sharing afternoons
In 2017 we asked that children did not attend the consultation evenings so that you are able to have an open and honest discussion with the teachers about the children's education. We agreed that we would have book sharing opportunities with the term to look through the children's work with them and be able to discuss what they have been learning. In the spring and summer terms, parents/carers are invited to tour the whole school, guided by their children. They are able to look around all the classrooms and facilities, celebrate the school's work and meet with staff. It is a good opportunity to prepare for the new academic year.
These are very well attended by parents/carers, keen to learn how best to help their children with their learning. They have focused on Mathematics and English, giving parents/carers information as to the latest in educational thinking and practical ways in which to support their children.
Mums/Dads/Carers In School Days
Once a year we invite Mums,Dads and Carers to spend some time in school, working alongside their children in class. These events are extremely popular and it is a wonderful opportunity for parents/carers to get a feel of their child's learning environment.
In conjunction with the Governing Board an annual survey is created to help the staff and governors evaluate how parents/carers feel about all aspects of the school. Feedback is taken very seriously and used to ensure the very best is being done for every child at The Downley School. It is also a chance to hear what the school is doing really well and to maintain the high standards. Surveys are also conducted on a regular basis to consult with parents/carers over important decisions and changes.
All parents/carers are automatically members of the PA. They are invited and encouraged to participate in the various functions and fundraising initiatives that are arranged throughout the year. These events raise money for extra equipment around the school that would otherwise not be available to the children (eg many of the IT resources and playground equipment is funded by the PA).
Lots of parents/carers offer their time to volunteer in school - hearing reading, leading guided reading groups, helping in class, with school trips, running extracurricular clubs, clearing the pond area. If you would like to volunteer, please sign up at the office, and we will ask you to complete a volunteers' application form, conduct a volunteers interview and discuss the schools needs. You will need a short induction about school alongside safeguarding training and also to apply for a DBS (security) check through the school office. We take the safeguarding of our children very seriously and only when you have received clearance will you be able to come into school. We are extremely grateful for all the extra help and support from our community. If you are interested than please ask for our Volunteers in school policy.