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Election Boost Promised for Parent Engagement in Qld Independent Schools

Queensland independent school communities have welcomed the commitment by a re-elected Labor State Government to provide additional support to the sector’s peak parent body to enhance family engagement in student learning.

In a video message to the independent schooling sector, Education Minister Grace Grace confirmed Labor would provide annual funding of $100,000 to the Queensland Independent Schools Parents Network (QIS Parents Network) – an increase of just over $30,000 on its current level of support.

The commitment responds to a request put forward in the independent schooling sector’s Queensland Election Statement 2020.

QIS Parents Network is a small representative body staffed by a part-time Executive Officer who is supported in her role by a voluntary consultative committee of independent school parents. The network also receives in-kind support from Independent Schools Queensland (ISQ).

QIS Parents Network Executive Officer Justine Cirocco welcomed the extra funding commitment saying it would further extend the network’s initiatives to support the state’s growing group of independent schools further engage their diverse parent communities in student learning.

“More than 50 years of research has shown that children whose parents take an interest in, talk about and support their learning at home, do better in school and have improved wellbeing,” Ms Cirocco said.

“The COVID-19 home learning period showed how critical trust, communication and positive partnerships between families and teachers are to a child’s attitude to learning and their progress.”

Parent engagement – how parents positively support their child’s learning at home with the support and guidance of their principals and teachers – is a long-standing and important policy focus for governments at all levels and is also enshrined in the Australian Professional Standards for Teachers and Principals.

ISQ Executive Director David Robertson said ISQ and the QIS Parents Network worked in partnership to support positive and respectful partnerships between families and independent schools.

“This funding commitment is an important recognition of the QIS Parents Network and its work to strengthen school and family ties for the benefit of student learning.”

Media contact | Justine Nolan | 0428 612 315 | jnolan@isq.qld.edu.au

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