APPG — 28th November 2022
Members of the All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) for Parental Participation in Education gathered in Westminster on 28th November 2022. The group exists to promote the benefits of parents actively participating in their child’s education, and of building close and successful relationships between homes and schools.
Parent Voice Report 2022
Our research manager presented newly released data from its latest annual parent survey. The findings are set to be published in a Parent Voice Report. The survey gathers the views of thousands of parents across England, Wales and Northern Ireland, and ensures that demographics are collected so that the opinions of a wide range of parents are captured. Three main themes were school funding and the cost of living, parental participation and mental health and wellbeing. MPs, peers and education stakeholders heard that:
- More lower-income families are being asked to contribute to the school fund. School uniforms, meals, transport, extra-curricular trips are parents’ biggest concerns.
- Barriers to getting involved are time, costs (especially for lower income parents) and not being formally asked.
- Parents’ concerns about mental health reduced a little compared to results from recent years. The most commonly reported issues are exam stress and anxiety. However, there is a worrying 5–8% reporting more serious incidents such as bullying or sexual harassment.
The presentation concluded with the expectation that there will likely be more pressure on mental health services in schools as a result of the cost of living crisis. To ensure best access to services, it would be useful for schools to engage with parents when developing policies on how they deal with mental health issues. There is always value in improving their communication with parents.