Our External Affairs team arranged a drop-in session at Westminster on Wednesday 14th March 2018.
That morning, Parentkind staff met with 37 MPs plus 7 MPs' researchers representing constituencies and parties across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, to introduce them in person to our new name and our ambitions as a charity representing the vital role parents play in education.
We answered questions from MPs about what we do and how they can support us, and also informed them about the great work of parents in member schools within their constituency.
Finally, we asked them to sign up to our Parentkind pledge.
What is the Parentkind pledge?
We said to MPs that, as parents, it’s our job to do all we can to make our children’s education the best it can be, but that they can show their support for education by agreeing:
“I consider the active participation of parents an essential ingredient in the success of our children’s education and I commit to supporting education policy that brings homes and schools together for the good of all children and society, where more parents are engaged in their child’s education in more ways.”
Why did we invite MPs to meet us?
We plan more events like this one for the future. This is because it ties in to one of our top five objectives as an organisation, namely: “Championing the role of parents in education and their importance in education policy”. It is our aim to influence policy-makers into recognising more fully the role of parents as the most important stakeholder in a child’s education, and parental engagement as a powerful tool for improving the educational experience and outcomes of every child. We want consideration for parents to be higher up the agenda in education, at school level and government level, moving towards a culture where the benefits of parent-friendly schools are accepted as the norm within the education landscape. The best way we can advocate for all parents playing an active role in education is to present our aims and ambitions to policy-makers and remind them of the vital contribution of parents as a reason our voices should be heard.
Read more about our strategy.
Sponsorship from Tom Tugendhat MP
We gratefully acknowledge the support of Tom Tugendhat (Tonbridge and Malling), the MP local to Parentkind HQ, who kindly sponsored our event. His backing enabled us to secure a room at Westminster.
Did your local MP visit us?
Check out below the full list of MPs who stopped by to ask about Parentkind and sign our pledge. Don’t worry if you don’t spot your local representative. Wednesdays are a busy day at the Commons, and there are many demands on MPs’ time, and scheduled meetings that they cannot rearrange. We received many enquiries and messages of support from MPs who were not able to attend in person, and some arranged for a researcher to represent them and take back information. However, as you can see from the photo gallery, and from the many signatures on our Parentkind pledge board, we put our case for parents to a significant number of MPs in what was a constructive and enjoyable event. Why not get in touch with your local MP and see what they are actively doing to support parents in schools? If you’re on Twitter, see more using the hashtag #ParentkindPledge.
MPs who signed our Parentkind pledge:
- Alan Whitehead MP Southampton, Test
- Alberto Costa MP South Leicestershire
- Bambos Charalambous MP Enfield, Southgate
- Bim Afolami MP Hitchin and Harpenden
- Chloe Smith MP Norwich North
- Chris Bryant MP Rhondda
- Damian Green MP Ashford
- Sir David Amess MP Southend West
- Fiona Bruce MP Congleton
- Gerald Jones MP Merthyr Tydfil and Rhymney
- Giles Watling MP Clacton
- Gordon Marsden MP Blackpool South
- Holly Lynch MP Halifax
- Jim Shannon MP Strangford
- John Hayes MP South Holland and The Deepings
- Judith Cummins MP Bradford South
- Kate Green MP Stretford and Urmston
- Luke Pollard MP Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport
- Madeleine Moon MP Bridgend
- Martin Vickers MP Cleethorpes
- Melanie Onn MP Great Grimsby
- Mohammad Yasin MP Bedford
- Nic Dakin MP Scunthorpe
- Sir Oliver Heald QC MP North East Hertfordshire
- Philip Dunne MP Ludlow
- Rachel Maskell MP York Central
- Rebecca Pow MP Taunton Deane
- Rosie Duffield MP Canterbury
- Sandy Martin MP Ipswich
- Sharon Hodgson MP Washington and Sunderland West
- Sir Peter Bottomley MP Worthing West
- Stephen Lloyd MP Eastbourne
- Steve McCabe MP Birmingham, Selly Oak
- Tom Tudendhat MP Tonbridge and Malling
- Tony Lloyd MP Rochdale
- Tracy Brabin MP Batley and Spen
- Sir Vince Cable MP Twickenham