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Entries in school information (3)


New guide to getting school information

Non-resident parents often encounter unnecessary obstacles to obtaining information about their children's education, in situations when they are perfectly entitled to obtain school reports, attend parents evenings and share in the flow of information from schoool to home.

FNF Scotland has published a guide to help these parents overcome the obstacles and clarify their legal rights. 

It covers the legal entitlements of non-resident parents with and without parental rights and responsibilities and recommendations and situations in which school records can be withheld.

The first contact with the school is crucial, and we suggest that it is better to make the intial contact by letter or email rather than by phone call or in person. The non-resident parent may be anxious and fearful whn making this enquiry whereas the school receptionist may be trying to do three things at once and may come over unintentionally as negative. 

The guide includes sample letter templates for various categories of parent.

This publication follows our research  carried out in partnership with Children in Scotland.  A guide for education authorities and schools will be published shortly.


Ways to become more actively engaged in your child's education

Following separation some parents will find that their relationship with their child's school alters. Although you try your very best to stay involved you may find that the school does not actively engage with you. Unfortunately non-resident parents often become invisible to the important institutions in their child's life. However there are resources out there for all parents. 

Parentzone is a website run by Education Scotland which is full of resources and support for parents. You may have questions about Curriculum for Excellence (CfE) or ways of getting involved which you feel are silly questions. There are never any silly questions but if you feel unable to ask your child's school about such information then there are other ways of being informed. 

Parents have the biggest impact on their child's learning. Being aware of what is happening in school and conversing with your child can improve their learning outcomes. You needn't worry that you don't know the answers to their maths problems. What is most important is that children know they have your support. You may feel that you have little time with them and that homework is not ideal for bonding however learning is not just about academic study. Education Scotland have put together 2 booklets which highlight everyday learning opportunities. 

Every day's a learning day - Birth to 3 years 

Every day's a learning day - 3 to 6 years

If your children are older than 0-6 years then do not feel forgotten about. The National Parent Forum of Scotland has an online blog and produces newsletters in each school session.

Children in Scotland and the Scottish Youth Parliament have recently launched a new website called BeXcellent which sets out information on Curriculum for Excellence for young people. 

Engage for Education have a number of videos on their website about how Curriculum for Excellence is changing the Scottish Education system.

If your children are at secondary school level then the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA) has information about the new national qualifications under CfE. The SQA website also has a mythbuster specifically for the new national qualifications. 

No matter what stage your child is at in their education there are ways to make yourself informed. Although your child's school may not actively engage with you there is nothing to stop you accessing the resources available. 


Consultation on Information From Schools

Families Need Fathers Scotland gave comments on the need to ensure that both parents in separated families receive school information in our response to a recent Scottish Government consultation.

We were pleased to see the following statement in the consultation report, published today by Scottish government.

"There is a need to be inclusive and provide and promote opportunities for communication with parents that might otherwise be overlooked."

Many parents have contacted us about problems in receiving school information, and we are currently studying the practice and procedures of local authorities across Scotland.

Please contact us at scotland@fnf.org.uk if you have any good or bad experiences you feel will be useful in developing this campaign.