From 6-8 June 2017, the Parent Engagement Conference will be jointly hosted by the Australian Research Alliance for Children and Youth (ARACY) and national children’s education charity The Smith Family. The conference is supported by the Australian Government Department of Education and Training.
The three-day event will bring together over 600 researchers, policymakers, practitioners and parents for a national discussion on parent engagement.
ARACY CEO Stephen Bartos said that the conference, part of ARACY’s national research project in parent engagement, will highlight the evidence that parent engagement improves children’s learning and wellbeing outcomes, regardless of a parent’s skills or background.
“Our research shows effective parent engagement has potential to be a game-changer to improve Australian educational outcomes and overcome disadvantage. Parent engagement is far more than parent-teacher interviews or volunteering for the school canteen. It is about parents working as a team with educators to encourage and support children’s learning. The key question is how parent engagement can work better so as to improve student outcomes,” said Bartos.
The Smith Family’s chief executive Dr Lisa O’Brien said non-government organisations are well-positioned to help facilitate parent engagement within families, schools and the wider community.
“Parent engagement is central to our Learning for Life program, supporting thousands of disadvantaged young Australians with their education. We’ve seen firsthand that children with engaged parents do much better at school, regardless of their family’s income or background.
“When parents are equipped with the knowledge, skills and confidence to support their child’s learning, the benefits for children extend well beyond their education into their working lives,” said O’Brien.