Parental Engagement the focus for Thames View Infants

Based in East London, Thames View Infants has a complex demographic, with 43 different languages spoken within the school, as well as high levels of social-deprivation.

Despite this, the school was appointed as a National Leader of Education in 2014, has been rated ‘Outstanding’ twice by OFSTED and has some of the highest end-of-Key Stage One results in the country.

One thing the school is extremely passionate about is engaging parents. Head Teacher, Paul Jordan, told us, “We need to be able to reach parents easily and reliably and paper just wasn’t doing that for us. We recognise how much technology is helping schools to bridge that relationship and we wanted to use the best parent engagement system on the market to help us do that – which is why we chose ParentMail.”

With the aim of getting 95% of parents on board in the next few months, Thames View Infants will quickly make significant savings in paper costs and plan to be completely paperless before the end of the year.

Paul told us, “Previously, we were sending out newsletters, weekly summaries of learning, details of our many family drop-ins, information about clubs and visit consent letters – whatever was required to keep our families up to date and informed with their child’s education. But when we looked at the expense, we realised that we were spending £18,000 a year to do it, which is an awful lot of money! 

So we looked at other ways to send this information home, and we quickly realised ParentMail would allow us to do it all and more at a fraction of the cost and time. We’re now communicating more, actively reaching more parents and saving money and time in the process. The money and time we are saving, we can use in other areas of the school – for example, to help our children progress, so it’s fantastic for us.”

The school has made further savings by consolidating the number of systems they used to communicate with parents, and doing it all through ParentMail; “Initially, we were using ParentMail to send our newsletters home, another system so parents could book parents’ evenings and another so parents could pay online - and still sending forms home by paper. So we were paying for three systems and still managing the cost of printing and photocopying.

“Now we’re sending it all through ParentMail, and our parents can do everything on their smartphone. They can pick up messages, contribute to school visits, complete a permission form, book a Parents’ Evening appointment, pay for school dinners, select their preference for an After School Club, all from one place, and in just a few taps!”

The school is very happy with the progress they’ve seen with more parents engaging with what’s going on in the classroom, and say ParentMail has played a vital role in their on-going vision of “valuing parents as partners”.

If you’d like to improve your parental engagement and cut the costs of your school communication then come and speak to us.