Family-School Partnerships

Family-school and community partnerships are an effective way to support and empower positive parent engagement, and bring together family and community resources to enrich student learning and wellbeing.

The Family-School Partnerships Framework

The Family-School Partnerships Framework was developed to promote and guide partnership building.

The core principles of effective family-school partnerships are:

  • parents and families are the first and continuing educators of their children
  • learning is lifelong and occurs in multiple settings
  • partnerships, schools and school communities flourish when the diversity and strengths of families are valued and leveraged
  • community engagement expands responsibility and resources
  • partnerships grow from mutual trust, respect and responsibility
  • partnerships need committed, collaborative and creative leadership.

Key dimensions of family-school partnerships

The seven key dimensions that frame relationship and partnership building are:

  • communicate
  • connect learning at home and school
  • build community and identity
  • recognise the role of the family
  • consult on decision-making
  • collaborate beyond the school
  • participate.

Further detail on each dimension can be viewed in the document below:

Strategies

For each key dimension there is a set of suggested strategies that can be used to support school communities in building and improving family-school partnerships.

These strategies aim to provide practical guidance and complement the work already being done in schools.

Print version of strategies

School Assessment Tool

Family-school partnerships can be built into existing school plans, activities and strategies. A good starting point is the School Assessment Tool—Reflection Matrix. This tool is based on the key dimensions identified in the Family-School Partnerships Framework, and can help schools identify areas of strength and focus areas for further work.