The Effective Parent Programme
Over the last few years we have become more and more aware of the how the attitudes and beliefs of the parents influence their child's development. There is a high correlation between the communication patterns of the parents and the patterns we see in their children.
At Synergy Schooling we do not see your child's development as something isolated from yours. The two need to be considered together. In fact, we saw this as such an important part of supporting your child that we took a stand in that all (each and every) parent and caregiver who enrols their child/ren at Synergy Schooling will automatically enrol themselves into our Effective Parent Programme. We now have parents enrolling their children at our school because they themselves want to be part of this programme!
At this point let us comment that this does not imply you are an ineffective parent. It does not imply that there is something wrong. It does not imply that we know what is best for you and for your child. Our starting point is to say, "Together, you and the school wish to support the development of your children so work with us to find out how best to do that. Let's explore and become aware of how we can keep developing your awareness and skills to support you in parenting your children consciously."
Children are learning attitude and behavioural patterns from their parents and caregivers. Synergy Schooling creates a space for reflection and inquiry into supporting the development of the children and this therefore extends to the development of the primary caregivers as well. The Effective Parent Programme is fluid and flexible and was designed in dialogue with the parent body. The purpose of the Programme is to work with the question “How can we support you in developing the relationship with your child?”
At Synergy Schooling we believe in the co-construction of an environment with children, parents and teachers who work together as a team. To enable this we offer support structures to empower parents in their understanding of their children's development. We feel many parents are not normally invited as co-participants in their child's education. There is much frustration, as parents try to engage with schools yet have no channels to do so.
Synergy Schooling's long-term aim is to provide support to parents in the form of workshops, consultations and literature. The Effective Parenting Programme (EPP) consists of multiple elements to increase the opportunities for parents to become actively involved in their children’s education. This includes Daily Journals detailing the daily activities, interests and experiences of their children, written by the teachers and e-mailed to all parents.
Social integration time twice daily is a time parents are invited into the school to be with their children, teachers and other parents, offering time and opportunity to create quality relationships with the people at school with their children. Each class also has weekly e-mails which share with the parents what is being learnt and how parents can support this learning at home.
As part of the experience of Synergy Schooling, we also offer a selection of workshops and information sessions that revolve around our patterns of communication and how they impact on the development of self-confidence and self-esteem. These workshops open up the possibility of fundamentally transforming the relationship with your child.
Here are the four current requirements parents are agreeing to fulfill in enrolling their children at our school.
1. Both parents need to attend the 1st and 3rd term reporting meetings with their child’s teachers. (This is the 30 minute report card meeting where the teacher gives you your child’s report and explains it to you. These time slots can already be booked at the office. Both parents need to be at this report card meeting. To ensure that you can plan accordingly, you can already book these times for yourself and your partner at least half a year in advance.)
2. For the 1st and 3rd term reporting meetings, both parents are required to write their own ‘report’ to be handed in to their child’s teacher. All we are requesting is that you write your observations of how you feel your child has changed over the last 5 months (a single page). If the school sees teachers and parents as part of the same to support the development of your child, then we also wish to find out how you view the development of your child. The school will provide the parents with the reporting template as well as basic guidelines in what to look for. This will be sent to you well in advance of the reporting meeting.
3. Each parent to attend at least two of the four School Sharing meetings; (every term the school holds a Schooling Sharing where parents and teachers get together to share what is working for them, what is not working for them, and to find out any further information they would like to know. Two of the Sharings happen in the afternoon and the other two in the evening. Each parent needs to attend just two of the four, which ever works best for you (a total of three hours per year).
4. Each parent to attend The Self Esteem Workshop within the first year of being at the school. (either in the 1st or 3rd term and will run over 7 evenings over a 7 week period). The purpose of these workshops is to support you in the awareness and skills in building the self esteem of your child. These are skills and tools to support you in powerful and effective communication with your child.