Birkland Community Exchange
Case study information – Birklands Community Exchange
Fewer parents were getting actively involved in school life, only 28% of pupils having reading support in the home, and young parents were feeling lost once their children started school.
Birklands Primary School wanted:
- to involve a new generation of parents in their children’s learning;
- provide practical opportunities for parents and children to develop and extend their skills and knowledge of learning together;
- develop confidence among parents to encourage them to contribute more to both the school and wider community life;
- to provide a meeting resource for the wider community.
This case study explores a primary school’s involvement in Neighbourhood Management and their gradual realisation that the school could, once again be a focal point for the whole community and actively try to break the cycle of despair in their small town.
Once funding was secured an annexe was built onto the school; a member of staff talked to parents in the playground about opportunities at the Exchange. The initial programme of activities included:
- Drop in centre – parents and children learning to read together
- English and maths homework helper
- Course for parents whether they had children at that school or not, Welcome to Working with Children, First Aid
- Exchange library (learning games, books, puzzles).
The school has again become a focal point for the community. More parents are now involved with the school and community. The books and games library is well stocked.
Parents (overwhelmingly young mothers) have learnt about Sure-Start and talk enthusiastically about their enjoying a learning environment. For some it has got them out of the home and depression, for others it has given them a taste of a career i.e. in teaching. Parents no longer have to travel far to attend courses.
The school, the community.
Computer facilities, staffing, the Exchange building itself.
Project start date
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