Auburn North Public School

The Best of All Worlds for 21st Century Learners

Telephone02 9748 1036

Emailauburnnth-p.school@det.nsw.edu.au

Parent Engagement

PARENT ENGAGEMENT

 

Our school's cohesive community interprets moral purpose as "…acting with an intention of making a positive difference in the lives of individuals, groups of people, and communities of people". Over the past 4 years our learning community has believed it has had both a moral purpose and moral responsibility to further promoting and developing community cohesion, and social harmony and unity for individuals and groups of people in our: 

 

  1. School Community.
  2. South Western Sydney Region.

 

In response to our moral purpose and responsibility, in 2013 we believe we have greatly enhanced social harmony and unity near and far as a result of:

 

  • building outstanding partnerships with the local community, with other schools, and with a wide range of community-focussed agencies.
  • recognising and valued diversity in a range of schools and communities.
  • catering effectively for the needs and interests of all students in our school and in many other contexts, celebrating their individual differences as unique, distinct, and vital to our society.

 

We believe that social harmony and unity can be significantly enhanced if students love their schools and their learning, and if parents participate in their children's learning. After family influence, research clearly indicates that in a school the 2 most important effects on student achievement is the individual teacher and the school's leadership. Therefore, to further enhance harmony and unity across the Region this year, we have stressed these factors in our many communications and presentation across the Region when sharing our many successes in the areas of leadership, teaching and learning, and parent participation.Parents1

 

We believe that we have developed a learning community that is something special, something wonderful, something exceptional. We believe our school community appreciates each individual's uniqueness and calls forth their potential and provides opportunities for human fulfilment. We believe our school community serves as a model for what education can become, in terms of producing social, emotional and educational equity for our state's most disadvantaged members. We believe visitors come to our school to learn and to contribute to social harmony and unity. We also believe that our school community is a living, dynamic celebration of mutual respect, harmony and unity and this year we have been committed to assisting schools and communities across the region achieve these human aspirations.

 

A variety of links and strategies have been utilised to achieve our moral responsibility. They have included responding to areas of particular need, following a humanitarian process by including members who are otherwise marginalised, especially refugee families, Aboriginal families, and other socio-economically disadvantaged families, following a democratic process by facilitating community members to participate actively in THEIR schools, and developing partnerships with relevant and important outside agencies and community groups.

 

Auburn North staff collaboratively developed a 2013-2014 vision/mission statement which embeds active parent and community participation in all aspects of our learning community to further facilitate parents to be partners in supporting their child's learning.

 

2013 – 2014 VISION/MISSION STATEMENT

‘To continue to develop a cohesive, dynamic, intrinsically motivated and research-based school learning community that values and celebrates cultural diversity, and active parent and community participation, where highly-skilled, innovative, and collaborative teams of teachers implement quality, student-centred teaching and learning programs which result in students developing lifelong learning skills and exceeding their full potential academically, emotionally, socially, physically, and creatively'.

 

 

parents2

Over the past 4 years our focus for increased parental engagement in supporting their child's learning has been in the following areas:

  • i. Schools as Community Centres

ii. New Arrival and Refugee Program

iii. Additional Initiatives

 

 

 

 

 

i. Our Schools as Community Centres Program

Our school's very important and integrated SaCC programs (HARMONY HOUSE) strategies and its coordinating facilitator have had an enormous impact on increasing parent participation and engagement  at Auburn North and in building social harmony, social unity and community cohesiveness near and far. Programs and strategies have included:

In-school

Making connections with and supporting Aboriginal families and redefining our school's approach to educating our students, parents and community about indigenous Australians by utilising a $15000 donation from the Christian Community Church to employ an Aboriginal Liaison Officer (ALO) to develop close links with Aboriginal members of our parents aboriginalcommunity in the Auburn, Granville and Guildford suburbs. Our ALO will develop programs with organisations such as Barnardos and Brighter Futures to assess and provide support services for Aboriginal individuals and families in areas such as health, education and life skills, and to inform the wider community about Aboriginal issues (‘Sorry Day', ‘Reconciliation Week', ‘NAIDOC Week'). Our ALO will also assist students appreciate Aboriginal culture and traditions.

  • Weekly classesfor more the 80 parents in areas such as:
    • English
    • Maths
    • Computers
    • Parenting
  • Auburn Community Development Network (ACDN) developed a craft program for parents that celebrated the unique diversity and celebration of different cultural traditions, such as henna painting, Arabic calligraphy and weaving.
  • Sydney West Health Service provided facilitators for an eight-week personalised nutrition and exercise program for parents.
  • Auburn Pre-school‘Transition To School Well' program prepares pre-school children for their successful transition into Kindergarten.
  • Different agenciescoordinated programs such as:
    • ‘Positive Parenting Program'
    • ‘Raising Resilient Children'
    • Father information sessions
    • Parent excursions
    • Publication of the "Auburn Cultural Cuisine Cookbook", which included contributions by the mothers from school's cooking classes.

 

Other schools

  • Coordinated playgroup programs at Auburn Public School and Homebush West Public School. 
  • Developed and implemented English classes for parents at Regents Park Public School.

 

Wider community

  • Barnardos, Brighter Futures,Auburn City Council, Auburn Diversity Service, Auburn Community Health Service andMobile Minders were key community stakeholders who contributed to the ‘Young Auburn Mums Program' and the ‘Paint Auburn READ' program, both of which were coordinated by our facilitator.
  • Barnardos, Brighter Futures and Auburn Diversity Service facilitated a monthly playtime in the park program that encouraged social interaction and support amongst families with limited social support in Australia.
  • Auburn Diversity Serviceassisted refugee parents, many of whom have not received a formal education, understand how to promote their children's early childhood literacy skills through the ‘Baby Rhyme Time Program'.
  • Sudanese Mother's Project, facilitated by Bakita Centre, engaged and created a network for Sudanese families within the Auburn and Homebush areas.
  • Liaised with theDepartment of Juvenile parents4Justice, Juniperina, to provide young women with the opportunity to access SaCC services (eg. St John's First Aid course).
  • C3 Community Church and Mobile Minders developed computer skillsof parents in the wider community. One mother made a flyer for her daughters' 3 year old birthday and another learnt how to join Facebook to connect with family members overseas
  • Mobile Minders Childcare and our bi-lingual CLO enabled Afghani mothers to participate in a range of programs, further empowering them to become independent, active and valued members of our Australian community.

 

 

ii. Our New Arrivals (NA) Program

Our multi-layered new arrivals program enables new families to settle into the community quickly and effectively and continues to support families as they become more familiar and confident with their new way of life. Programs and strategies have included:

  • Welcoming new familiesby interviewing parents and students on their arrival in order to determine important information about their family history and to determine which support networks our community can provide to support them during their transition into Australian society.
  • Employment of two multi-lingual Community Liaison Officers (CLOs) to establish supportive relationships that enable clear and open communication with families, and provide in-class support for targeted NA students.
  • Development and implementation of outstanding New Arrivals Programs. Each NA students participates in these programs for 8 hours per week for at least the first 6 -9 months to enable them to transition into mainstream classes.
  • Smith Family –improved student access to educational experiences by awarding 20 ‘Learning for Life' scholarships to refugee families, organising student excursions, and donating toys and school equipment.
  • ‘SPARKS' (St Vincent de Paul)– improved former refugee students' literacy skills and self-esteem by working individually with volunteer tutors after school in the Library.

 

iii. Additional Initiatives

 

To improve and increase parent participation and develop positive powerful partnerships with our parents, additional programs and initiatives which have been developed and implemented include:

 

  • coordinating 3 way conferences twice a year where teachers, parents and students collaboratively set goals for student attainment in term 1, and reviewed student progress in term 3. An average of 95% of our parents participate in each of these conferences.

 

  • Increasing the role of the P. and C. in our school. 201 parents and 199 parents attended two recent P. and C. meetings. The meetings were attended by our four community language teachers to assist with interpretation.

 

  • Coordinating a wide range of regular parent information workshops based on the NSW syllabuses and our school's teaching programs and strategies. This month's hands-on session, which focussed on multiplication and division, was attended by 51 parents. Community language teachers and community liaison officers assisted parents during the workshop.

 

  • 'Partners for Learning': More than 120 parents have attended the the first two of 4 workshops which focus on schooling in Australia, and Literacy and Numeracy. In addition, Partners for Learning facilitates a 4-week orientation program for children who have not attended pre-school in Australia.

 

  • We are one of five schools selected to be sponsored by the University of Western Sydney's ‘Books In Homes' program. ‘Books in Homes' empowers children and families living in disadvantaged circumstances in Australia, through their choice of brand new books. This clearly promotes the love of reading so that students and parents read together at home and ultimately improves literacy skills.

 

  • Our school embraces the community seven days a week by enabling community groups to use our facilities. Tamil, Turkish, Dari and Farsi classes are taught by over fifty teachers to over one thousand students at our school each weekend.

 

  • We have engaged two community liaison officers to facilitate increased numbers of parents to participate in programs.

 

  • Developing the library website (www.anpslibrary.com) so that students and parents have access to quality online curriculum links to support their learning and enable consolidation of their learning at home.

 

  • Auburn North Public School was awarded the ‘2012 Cohesive Community School Award'. More than 250 parents and other family members joined our students and staff on Thursday 21st March to celebrate Harmony Day and its theme, ‘Many Stories. One Australia'. We were presented with our community's ‘2012 Cohesive Community School Award' by Mr Dizdar, our Regional Director, on behalf of Mr Piccoli, the NSW Minister for Education and Communities.

 

"Good afternoon Mr Harris,

Congratulations to the entire Auburn North PS community on a fantastic celebration today to mark harmony day with the recognition of attaining the NSW Cohesive Community School Award so richly deserved by the school community.  The student leaders, the school choir, the sharing of parent and students stories and the harmony day awards and your words of pride and achievement and expectation for the school community were all extremely powerful.

I really enjoyed the occasion and visiting your school, harmony house and the community garden again – the food was superb!

Please pass on my congratulations to all involved in today's great recognition of the superb work undertaken at our school.  I know that a lot of organisation would have gone into today.

You should be a very proud principal of what is a great public school."

 

Murat Dizdar

Regional Director South Western Sydney


 

Parent Comments:

 

 "The English class is helping me read, write and understand better. I come from Lidcombe to Harmony House at this school, and my children are enrolled in this school too. I look forward to meeting my friends here at Harmony House at this school and now have no fear and my children and my family are safe."

Parent 1

 

 "Before coming to these groups at harmony House I wasn't able to read numbers, now I can recognise the numbers call my husband and son. At the moment I want to get my driver's licence and in the computer class found the RTA website and practicing the knowledge test. The school is like my second home because I am coming here 3 days per week, the people I meet here are like my second family as my family is in Afghanistan."

Parent 2

 

 "Coming to school is helping me a lot, I can spell my name now and my child's name and my address. The people are very friendly and I am making friends and emotionally I am more settled and feeling more at home."

Parent 3

 

 "I feel very safe living in Australia, I can go where I want to and do anything I want. By coming to the groups at Harmony House at this school it is helping me and my child to learn and my child is happy."

Parent 4

 

 

 

Yes, we are proud of the level of parent engagement and participation in THEIR school but we are always moving FORWARD to further increase the level of parent participation in THEIR school and in THEIR children's learning. That's the Auburn North way.