Every Little Bit Helps

Main points:

  • Getting involved in your child's school can benefit your child, the school and you.
  • Children with interested and involved parents do better at school both academically and socially.
  • There are a number of ways you can volunteer at your child's school.

Getting involved

While you are already encouraging your child’s learning at home, getting involved in your child’s school can benefit your child, the school and you.

It is well known that children with interested and involved parents do better at school both academically and socially. It enhances your child's sense of belonging as they see you actively participating in a place that means a lot to them. It also has benefits the school and the community. The more parents get involved, the better the school can meet its students’ needs.

Depending on the amount of time you have, and your skills, interests and experience, there are a number of ways you can get involved in your child’s school.

Read the school newsletter. School newsletters often contain information about what is happening at your child’s school and activities available for you and your child Reading the newsletter will also help you discuss what is going on at school with your child.

If you have a bit more time, you might consider volunteering. Schools often have opportunities for parents to help with running the school canteen, attending working bees, going on excursions and camps or helping on sports day. They may also have opportunities for you to be members of environment committees or cultural groups. You could also volunteer to help listen to children read or by helping them with maths. You might also consider supporting a school or student fundraising activity or helping out at the school fete. You may even like to join the school's parent club.

Joining the school council is another option. School councils include parents, school staff, community members and the school principal. In Victorian government schools, councils determine the school direction, priorities and budget. You may also like to join a sub-committee of the school council, like the school grounds sub-committee.

No matter what you choose to do, getting involved in your child’s school will give you a better idea of how the school is run, what it is trying to achieve educationally and what challenges it faces. It will also allow you and your child to become active members of your community and make it a better place for everyone.

Naturally, you should talk to your child’s school or ask your child’s teacher about any opportunities that would suit the amount of time you can spare. Your child’s school will welcome your involvement.

Related links

  • Getting Involved – supporting your child, staying informed and getting involved in their learning and school life.
  • Parent Participation at School – you can participate, both formally and informally, through school councils, parent clubs and volunteering.
  • SchoolMate App - an overview of what your child is learning and ways to get involved in your child's education.
  • Parents Victoria – a democratic organisation representing parents of students in Victorian government schools.
  • Victorian Council of School Organisations (VICCSO) – an independent, democratic organisation of over 500 affiliated school councils working towards achieving the best possible education and learning outcomes for all students.