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There are a few tips that can help you get parents involved with the governing or school council. While everyone can help to do this, the site leader will lead the process.
Recruiting for new members can be done by the school or preschool (site), but it can also be done by parents already on the council.
Sometimes all it takes to get parents involved is to ask them.
A parent member on a council is a volunteer. Think about the ways you would look for volunteers to help at your site. If you usually look for help through the community noticeboard or by email, do the same for the council. It’s about what works at your site, and being friendly and inviting.
Listen when parents show interest in what’s happening at your site or if they raise issues – actively recruit these people to get involved in the council when needed.
- Ask people on your council who have a positive attitude to give talks about their experiences on the council.
- Set up times for potential members to meet and get to know people on the council.
- Talk to the different people on your council and find out why they got involved.
- Have opportunities for parents to attend council meetings and see how they run, and what their involvement might be.
- Be clear about what happens in councils, for example the need to attend meetings regularly. Be up-front and honest about what’s involved.
- Create a role description.
- Provide refreshments.
- Listen to parents and what they have to say.
The easiest way for a parent on a council to know they are valued is to tell them, and demonstrate how their voice is being heard.
- Implement the decisions made at council meetings.
- Acknowledge their input and involvement.
- Recognise their efforts. Say thank you.
Be interested in them as people, not just as members of the council.
Governing Councils, Office for Education and Early Childhood
Phone: 8226 9617
Email: decd.sitegovernance [at] sa.gov.au