Epstein focused much of her work on homework practices and home-school education, including how parents can monitor and assist at home (Epstein, 1983).
The literature review will describe the benefits of parental involvement in terms of achievement of their children at school. In this chapter I will look at successful programmes such as Every Child Matters and Sure Start, models of parental involvement, relations between staff and parents, preparation of children academically, parenting techniques and the link with achievement, and conclude with the summary.
The involvement of parents has been effectively linked with children’s academic achievement throughout their time at school. The early years in school can be an exciting and emotional period for children and their parents in meeting the staff in school. Families, like teachers, create homes that promote learning, and reinforce what is being taught at school, and build the values and skills children need to become responsible adults (Henderson, 1995).
Most children will take time to settle as it will be difficult to form new bonds of attachment with the staff. As for parents, it will give them the opportunities to talk, discuss many issues surrounding their children as well as to express their wishes and expectations. Abbott et al (1989) claim a parent has a positive interest in, and expectations of, the school which their child attends. To help children take this new experience in their stride, many schools including the school where I work now offer home visits to the families before the child starts school. This will help to build a sense of confidence and a chance to find out more about what to expect and how the school staff will deal with a child who needs time to settle in a new environment. The National Association of Head Teachers (1988), defining and describing a home-school contract of partnership states that this model