The rise of the e-parent

Julie Booth, head of SIMS Independent, explains how you can use technology to keep parents informed

Schools can no longer ignore the fact that parents are expecting better communication and want more information about their child, whenever and wherever they need it.

The coverage about heated parental emails being fired off after a glass of wine or two focuses on schools in the independent sector and effective communication is certainly something that fee-paying schools have had to get better at as families become more technology-savvy.

A survey we undertook last year showed that staff in fee-paying schools have seen marked increases in the use of email (84%) and social media (68%) in their schools’ communications with parents.

While schools will frequently turn to text or email to let parents know about a flood that has closed the science lab or the fact that the inter-schools hockey tournament has gone into extra time, some have taken this a step further.

It’s expected that parents receive termly news about how their child is doing in school, but finding out what they have achieved that very day may be less common. Many schools publish a wide range of information, either online or through other digital channels like social media, to make sure parents are kept fully informed of what is going on throughout the day, week or term.

They might be able to view the latest attendance marks to reassure them that their child has arrived in school safely, as well as real-time test scores so they can see how well they have done in their spelling test today.

Happy parents are one of the best marketing tools and good schools are always keen to encourage them to get in touch if they have any questions or concerns about their child’s education or school life.

But it might be prudent for some parents to take a look at the wealth of information their child’s school is already providing, via a wide variety of different channels, before hitting ‘send’ on that email on a Sunday night.

Read Julie’s article in full at



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