GEMS launches first Parent Engagement Initiative
Active parent engagement equivalent to two/three extra years additional schooling
Dubai, January 12, 2010: Dubai-based GEMS Education has introduced the first of its kind parent engagement strategy in its network of schools.
On launching the initiative, Chief of Schools and Chief Operating Officer of GEMS, Ralph Tabberer said, “GEMS Education is actively promoting one of the fundamentals of education - the role of the parent in the learning process. Parents are the co-educators in their child’s education; they are the key to ensuring their child reaches their full potential. We want GEMS parents to have ‘real roles’ in the learning process.”
International research reveals that the biggest single reason a child does well in their education is when their parents take a real, active and consistent interest in what they are learning in school, at home, after the school gates are shut. Research shows that regular parent engagement is equivalent to giving them two to three years extra schooling.
The newly appointed Director for Parent Engagement, Wendy Berliner said, “When parents are engaged children get better grades, have fewer discipline problems and are more likely to be successful in their lives. The parent has already been a child’s first and most important teacher for a long time before he or she even arrives at school.”
Estimates suggest that up to 85 per cent of the waking hours of school-going children are spent outside the classroom when you take account of all the time during the working day, weekends and holidays.
“We have superb teachers in GEMS but they cannot be there all the time and, as a result, they can only do so much. Parents need to play their part as educators if children are to be the best they can be. Parent involvement is a good thing – we have parent ‘friends of school’ groups, and we do much to get our parents involved with their schools, but this initiative is a much needed extension of that,” Berliner added.
The parent engagement initiative is now an ongoing permanent programme throughout the GEMS network. In launching the GEMS Education parent engagement initiative, the company is holding a unique week of activities, which started on January 10, 2010. These will seek to show parents how crucial they are to the success of their children. There will be at least 70 activities across the 25 schools in the UAE.