Reporting to parents
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Time: 2:22 mins
Linda King, Assistant Principal, Allenvale School: “For the first time we’ve looked at our reporting to parents procedure and instead of having a mid-year vision report we had face-to-face interviews with parents and learning stories were shared. But they were sent home prior to that meeting and so they were also shared at the meeting and we’ve found that that was a wonderful way of reporting on student learning.”
Graeme Eastwood, Lead Teacher, Allenvale School: “Overwhelmingly the response has been positive especially when you’re working with students with special needs. They can often be a deficit model. So this is what your child can’t do, your child can’t do this, you’re child’s not operating at this. So learning stories take the other aspect of that and they say ‘this is what your child can do, and this is what they can do more of’ and they take that celebratory approach. I think parents have really enjoyed that rather than ‘your child is not doing this’.”
Meegan Fraser, Lead Teacher, Allenvale School: “I think there’s always benefits in being able to celebrate learning on an ongoing basis with family because often with our young people parents have been in a position where they have been told that perhaps their young person might not achieve very highly where if they’re, perhaps they’re not the same as their peers, but with a learning story you can celebrate those small accomplishments and parents appreciate that positivity.”
Graeme: “You don’t need to use jargon, that’s one of the best things about learning stories when it comes to reporting to parents and other people that work with them. It’s not just a teacher document. So you’re writing a story in terms that will be understandable by all those parties that it’s relevant to. So it’s a really quick and easy way of sharing knowledge about a student, and really personal knowledge about a student, not just ‘they are reading at level 16’ which is really not relevant to anybody except another teacher so it’s a way of giving meaningful and easily accessible information to whoever’s working with a child.”
Linda: “We surveyed staff and parents about learning stories and had nothing but positive results from the surveys and a lot of parents said ‘I had no idea they could do that’.”