A Derry college has become the first school in the city to introduce a new system which aims to keep parents engaged with their children’s education.
St Mary’s College has just introduced the SIMS Learning Gateway (parent portal) which is an electronic means of communication between parents and the school.
Parents are able to log on to a secure website with a unique username and password to access information on their child’s attendance, homework (red and green flags to indicate if it has been handed in), exam results and behaviour in school.
On Friday parents of Year 8 pupils were invited to the school to try out the new system.
However the school stressed that the SIMS (Schools Information Managements System) is not a tool for parents to “snoop” on their children, rather a way to actively engage.
Principal Marie Lindsay thanked the Year 8 parents for agreeing to take part, adding that she would have loved to have been able to use a system like this when her own children were at school.
“We are delighted that you are able to go on this journey with us,” she said.
“But we want your feedback.”
Trevor Millar from SIMS said that every survey that has been carried out into how we can maximise the potential of children, highlighted that parental engagement is key in unlocking that potential.
“This is a gateway that allows you to go in 24/7 from any device and look at your child’s attendance, behaviour and performance, end of term report.”