Department of Education

Parental engagement toolkit

Testing a toolkit that can help schools support parental engagement with children’s learning.

Parental engagement in children's learning is one of the best ways to close the gaps in academic achievement. At the moment, many schools do not deliver the level of engagement that actually benefits children.

Two previous studies have led to the development of a parental engagement toolkit:

The toolkit will help transition from parental involvement with schools to engagement with learning in the home. This toolkit allows schools to analyse their current practice, plan the way forward, and evaluate the changes along the way.

The purpose of this project was to test the parental engagement toolkit with the community.

In this project, 30 schools from Wiltshire Local Authority are asked to complete a series of forms from the toolkit. Interviews and visits to schools are also taking place, as well as training sessions for schools around parental engagement.

Toolkit contents

  • Information about the effective forms of parental engagement with children's learning.
  • A chart for schools to evaluate their current practice.
  • A chart for schools to create a wishlist of what they would like to accomplish, and an accompanying chart to consider the barriers they might encounter.
  • A large chart for schools to plan how to get to where they want to be, with places to note milestones, responsibilities, and evidence of accomplishment.
  • Evaluation forms.
  • A select bibliography.

Benefits of the research

This research helped us understand how schools can shift their understanding and practice around parental engagement.

By collaborating with schools and families, expertise and best practice has been shared. Many schools have incorporated elements of the toolkit into their school development plan.

You can view a report from this project.

Research team


The project started on 16 January 2016 and ended on 30 January 2017.

The budget is £1,800.



For enquiries relating to this project, please contact Dr Janet Goodall.