Engagement of parents ‘core’ to child’s progress

Karen Mullan MLA
Karen Mullan MLA

Sinn Féin Foyle MLA Karen Mullan has called upon education bodies to show leadership and to put in place measures to enhance parental engagement with schools and education.

The Derry politician addressed her call to the Department of Education, the Education Authority in the north and also to local schools.

Ms. Mullan also said that parents of schoolchildren had a vital role to play in their child’s educational development.

The Foyle MLA said: “Parental engagement is core to improving education and improving learning outcomes for children.

“Learning shouldn’t finish when the child leaves school at the end of the day, and with parents on board it is much easier to help children reach their potential.

“It is also essential that the stigma is removed from parenting programmes.”

Ms Mullan said that there were a range of organisations such as ParentingNI who were involved in providing vital support to parents.

She said that this was particularly when children and teenagers are going through transitions.

Encouraging more parents to avail of opportunities to get involved, she said:

“Unfortunately parents can feel discouraged from attending due to stigma.

“These programmes should be considered as a routine aspect of parenting as opposed to a crisis measure and I would urge parents to avail of these services,” Ms Mullan added.