Fostering ‘parental engagement with schooling’: primary school teachers’ insights from the COVID-19 school closures

Spear, Sara and Parkin, John and van Steen, Tommy and Goodall, Janet (2021) Fostering ‘parental engagement with schooling’: primary school teachers’ insights from the COVID-19 school closures. Educational Review. ISSN 1465-3397

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1080/00131911.2021.2007054

Abstract

The COVID-19 school closures presented an unprecedented challenge to primary education on a global scale, with teachers, parents, and children having to rapidly adjust to a remote learning environment, and with concerns that this would exacerbate educational inequalities. Parental engagement has been widely acknowledged to have a positive impact on children’s academic achievement, and previous studies have found that efforts by schools to foster parental engagement can help close the gap between advantaged and disadvantaged pupils. We therefore sought to explore how teachers perceived parental engagement during the school closures, and how they fostered this in a remote learning environment. Our research involved an exploratory mixed methods study with primary educators in England, with an online survey (n = 271) and semi-structured interviews (n = 24) in June and July 2020, after the first school closures in England, and then again after the second closures in April 2021 (n = 14). We found that teachers’ expectations for parental engagement during the school closures could be conceptualised as “parental participation in schooling”, with parents required to enable children’s access to learning resources provided by teachers, and participate in or supervise the completion of the learning activities set by teachers. There were however many barriers for parents in participating in schooling, particularly for those in disadvantaged groups. The strategies that teachers used to effectively foster parental participation in schooling have implications for encouraging parental engagement in children’s learning beyond the school closures.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: COVID-19, parental engagement, primary schools, remote learning, teachers, parents
Faculty: COVID-19 Research Collection
Faculty of Health, Education, Medicine & Social Care
SWORD Depositor: Symplectic User
Depositing User: Symplectic User
Date Deposited: 12 Nov 2021 10:21
Last Modified: 17 Jan 2022 15:22
URI: https://arro.anglia.ac.uk/id/eprint/707097

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