Parents are responsible for the education of
their children. A school cannot solely adopt this
responsibility, but it should be, in dialogue
with the parents, a partner
in the education of their child. This can
succeed only if the proper parental involvement
is in effect in the school, from intake to the
last day of school.
Lighthouse presumes that parents are prepared
to play their part in the success of the school
programme. Lighthouse also counts on the parents
for an active attitude in helping
with their child's assignments or homework.
There are several ways parents can gather information
about Lighthouse and their child's education:
- School Guide
At the start of the school year all parents
receive this School Guide with information about
the Lighthouse. This booklet provides answers
to many questions and is a handy reference book
throughout the school year.
- Teacher-Parent Conferences
Parents may always make an appointment with
the teacher to discuss issues pertaining to
the development of their child. Teachers may
be consulted briefly before or after school,
but not during lesson times. Furthermore IEP
meetings will be held to review a child's
progress and discuss new IEP goals. The evaluated
IEPs are the students's record of progress,
throughout the school year.
At the end of the school year the children receive
a written report.
- Home-School Diary
For students who have difficulty communicating,
or for parents who do not bring children to
school daily, there is a notebook for parents
and teachers to exchange relevant information
about the child.
- Parents Evenings
Twice a year an information parents meeting
will be organised. The parents are informed
about the educational programme and about the
latest school developments.
Each group has a class parent. This is a father or mother who supports the class teacher in helping to organise class activities and parents’ evenings. This parent is also the contact for new parents. However, questions regarding your child’s educational and social progress should be discussed with the class teacher and not the class parent.
The preparation of events such as class field trips, Christmas celebration, Sport days,
the Summer Party, etc. requires a lot of time
and energy from the staff. For this reason they
may appeal to the parents to assist them in this
PARENT/SCHOOL COUNCILS AND COMMITTEES
There are different ways for parents to have a say in the school’s policy. Informally parents can give suggestions or express complaints to the teacher, to the Director or to the School Board.
Parents can also join the HSV Parent Association or, for parents of preschoolers, the Three Little Ships Parent Advisory. A special parent meeting will be held in September to introduce the Heads of the HSV and to discuss the introduction of a Parent-Teacher Advisory Committee for Lighthouse Special Education.
• PARENT-TEACHER SITE COUNCIL (MR)
MR stands for the Dutch word Medezeggenschapsraad. This literally means “Right of say Council”. In essence the MR is a co-administration council (a mixture between a traditional Parent Teacher Association and a School Council).
It is a requirement by Dutch law to have an MR in every school. The MR plays an important role in the communication between parents, staff and Management by taking a critical look at proposals from the Board. The MR can advise or, in some cases, approve or disapprove, before a decision is final.
The Lighthouse MR is made up of two parents, two teachers, and the Director of the school. The MR limits itself to issues at a school level looking after the interests of the different parties it represents and discussing their needs with Management. It is therefore important to get know your MR Representatives and let your voice be heard.
The members of the MR are listed on the Lighthouse school website. The Minutes and Agenda of their meetings are posted on the website.
• JOINT PARENT-TEACHER ASSOCIATION (GMR)
From 2007, school foundations which have more than one school under their responsibility, have the legal obligation to include a general school council, the Gemeenschappelijke Medezeggenschapsraad.
The GMR of HSV foundation consists of a small group of representatives of parents and teachers from all HSV schools. They are the direct communication partner of the Executive Director and supervisory board, and discuss the school policy of the HSV Foundation.
The issues discussed in the GMR deal specifically with matters that affect the whole of the organisation, such as Budget, Annual Report, School Policies and Personnel issues. Any matter concerning just one school remains the responsibility and authorization of the individual association (MR).
The purpose of the GMR is to help ensure a high quality education at the schools of the HSV Foundation. It goes without saying that to reach this, a constructive co-operation is necessary between parents, teachers, directors and board members. The GMR is in practise, just like the board, mainly busy with creating conditions to be able to make decisions.
• ACTIVITY COMMITTEE (OR)
The school has an Activity Committee (in Dutch Ouderraad, literally Parent Council) consisting of parents/guardians chosen from and by the parents, staff members and school management. The main role of the Activity Committee is organising and running social events for the benefit of the school.