The first-day jitters are often felt keenly by parents as well as children, especially those entering the system for the first time.

But getting involved in your child’s education as much as possible from the beginning will help ease the nerves says president of the WA Council of State School Organisations Kylie Catto.

“Don’t be shy — most school communities are fantastic and they can benefit from every parent’s skills and experience, ” Ms Catto said.

“You don’t necessarily need to commit to being on the school P&C but parents who get involved in some way in their child’s education and make the journey enjoyable together often find the road is easier.

“Parents are often very busy, and everyone’s life circumstances are different, but if parents and carers can make contact with the school at least a couple of times a term or throughout the year, then it shows the children that they care and are interested in their learning.

“The earlier parents are able to be active participants, the better for families and the school, but be realistic about your ability to commit. Whether you help in the canteen, can sew costumes or volunteer for support- a-reader programs, it’s all valuable.”

Ms Catto said opening up strong lines of communication with the school, talking to children about their day and reading newsletters would help busy parents keep in touch.

“Be active in introducing yourself to others in the school community and make the most of email to keep the school informed, especially if your family is experiencing a change in life circumstances. Don’t feel guilty about the events that you can’t attend, but enjoy the ones that you can.”


© The West Australian

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