How can schools help children?

A child’s requirements of knowledge, skills, and attitudes for success are different. As parents we must realize that what was good enough for us will not suffice for our children. This is where schools can step in. Schools should now play a dual role—of educating kids as well as helping parents cope with the demands of a rapidly changing society. That is why I advocate that parents must be included actively and directly in the process of their kid’s education. Schools need to provide parents necessary training and support to aid them in parenting. They should also help to develop parent awareness of physical and psychological needs of a child during different stages of growth. Workshops held by schools for parents to understand what their children need, in terms of mental, emotional, social, spiritual, and physical growth, will help create a successful triangle of the child, parent, and school. If parental involvement with children can go beyond just getting him to complete his homework or revising for tests, it will make our mission of providing education much more meaningful. Every pre-school usually sees participation of parents in daily routine tasks. Parents volunteer for school projects, snack time, concert preparations, and emergency teaching. But our observation shows that as kids grow, parental involvement gradually decreases. More often than not, parental involvement in schools is limited to the PTA meetings or as audiences for annual days and sport days. If inclusive education is what we pledge to practice and if we really aim to tap into the innate greatness of every child, then why are we leaving out the parent? And this I believe is a serious omission. An adult usually has venues to proclaim his professional success. But where can he tap his potential as a parent? This can happen both at home and in school. Schools can become places where the parent is able to excel in the role he plays—that of a parent.