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Parent Engagement

A strong Parent Engagement programme underpins the Fortes approach to education. Research has proven that when parents are not only engaged but actively participating in their child’s education and learning at home, the child does much better at school and indeed achieves greater success as an adult in life.

Fortes’ Parent Engagement Programme provides parents the required guidance, understanding, infrastructure, resources, parenting tips, support groups, informational workshops, volunteer organisations and channels to assist parents in participating in their child’s learning. A Fortes school Parent Engagement Programme has several key initiatives and channels of communication:

What Makes Our Parent Engagement Programme Successful

Communication Through Virtual Learning Environment (VLE)

The Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) is a unique technology initiative of Fortes Education to digitally keep in touch with students and their parents. Parents and students are able to download the VLE mobile app on Apple and Android devices. The VLE provides constant updates about a child’s education, behaviour and activities at school. This seamless online communication helps develop a strong partnership between the school and parents.

Parent Drop-in Sessions & Parent Teacher Meetings

Parent Drop-in Sessions occur once a month and Parent Teacher Meetings once a term. Both consist of consultations with the teacher where parents have an opportunity to discuss their child’s progress, outcomes, targets and how to support their child’s education.

Parent Curriculum Workshops

Workshops are held twice a term where parents learn of their child’s programme of study so they can actively participate in supporting their child’s education.

Parent Volunteer Groups

The Parent Volunteer groups channel the positive ethos, goodwill and creativity of parents to enhance the student learning experience and to strengthen ties between the school, parents and students. The groups get involved in fund-raising and event support and organisation. The groups encourage development of a community spirit within the school with parents socialising and having fun with each other, students and faculty, and promote goodwill with and benefit to the community.

Typical events organised by the Parent Volunteer groups include:

  • Fundraising (Cake Sales, Gingerbread Raffle, Jumble Sale, Mad Hair Day, Odd Socks Day & Non Uniform Days, Sports Days, School events, and more).
  • School Support (International Day & UAE Day, Guided Reading, Library support, Music support, and more).
  • Charity Support (Rashid Paediatric Centre, Kerala School Library, Karuna Society for Animals, Manzil Centre for Special Needs, Al Noor Centre for Special Needs, and various other local and international charities and NGOs).
  • Social & Fun Events (Secondary end-of-year activities and end-of-year treats for students, and more).
  • Coffee Mornings Brunches and Lunches (informal gatherings where parents meet and make friends, and more)
  • Parent Socials (fun events such as quiz nights, drumming circles, dinners, paint-balling, & more)

Parents Association

Through the Parent Association, parents get involved in various community, teacher and student related portfolios.

Advisory Council

Through the Advisory Council, parents have representation on school matters and are able to voice their concerns to the school in a formal manner. In this way, a constructive dialogue is maintained between all stakeholders in the school.

Other Initiatives

  • Opportunities for parents to attend school events including sports, prize days, and cultural fairs.
  • Opportunities for parents to join a class to better understand modern teaching and learning.
  • Expert speakers to help parents understand child development.
  • Parent workshops (coffee hours, focus groups, informational sessions, etc.) on helping children to learn and succeed.
  • Guidance, resources and workshops to support parents so they know how to support their child’s learning at home. While many parents know the skills of good parenting, like with other Fortes schools, Sunmarke provides specific skills such as:
    • Enabling parents to rear children to grow up healthy and happy while setting them high but realistic standards and expectations academically, behaviourally, and socially.
    • Encouraging the parent to have a regular dialogue with his child about his learning, study program, activities, plans, hopes and day at school.
    • Providing tips to parents on how to stimulate their child’s learning by asking about the child’s interests, ideas, thoughts, and extending the child’s thinking and mind-space.
    • Encouraging parents to share activities with their child such as reading together, solving problems together, conducting science experiments, engaging in home building activities, cooking together and the like.
    • Providing positive feedback by praising the child’s efforts and progress.
    • Being a role model for the child by displaying a positive attitude and perseverance in the face of challenge.
    • Role modelling an appreciation for routine to establish in the child the discipline for achieving results.