Education begins at home. The first simple word a parent speaks to an infant opens the world of language to the child and sets the child on the path of exploration and discovery. When formal schooling begins, many parents believe that their role as educators has ended. But education is a shared responsibility of parents, schools, teachers, and various institutions in the economy and in society. New findings from the OECD’s Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) show that parental involvement in education is pivotal for the success of children throughout their school years and beyond.
The OECD presents its report, Let’s Read Them a Story! The Parent Factor in Education. The report examines whether and how parents’ involvement is related to their child’s proficiency in and enjoyment of reading — and it also offers comfort to parents who are concerned that they don’t have enough time or the requisite academic knowledge to help their children succeed in school. Many types of parental involvement that are associated with better student performance in PISA require relatively little time and no specialised knowledge. What counts is genuine interest and active engagement.
The report can be downloaded qui
This chapter discusses how parental involvement benefits students – and how particular forms of involvement may be more beneficial than others.
Parental involvement in a child’s education should start at birth – and never stop. This chapter shows how telling stories or reading books to children when they are very young is strongly related to how well they read and how much they enjoy reading later on.
Older children benefit from their parents’ involvement too. This chapter discusses how talking about social and political issues, or about books, films and television programmes with adolescent children is related to better reading performance at school.
When parents take the time to meet their child’s teachers, or when they volunteer for activities at school, they signal to their children that they value education. This chapter examines some of the ways busy parents can be involved in school activities and emphasises that parents and teachers should not wait to meet each other.
Children – even older children, although they may not want to admit it – look to their parents as role models. This chapter explores how children whose parents have more positive attitudes towards reading are better at reading, themselves, and enjoy reading more.