Some parents simply don’t have the time to be involved in school committees and that’s perfectly understandable. If it can’t be done, it can’t be done. But if time permits, being a committee member at your child’s school has many benefits for you as a parent as well as for your child.
Although few children will come out and say it (this would be so un-cool!), most are secretly proud of the fact that mum or dad are on a school committee. Immediately parents have shown that they see school as important.
This is also a great way to make friends with other parents which can lead to car-pooling as well as the opportunity for your child to make new friends with the children of the parents you meet.
Joining a school committee also makes it possible for parents to contribute ideas and feedback which can help to make the school an even better place for children.
If you really have the time and the energy, consider standing for the school council. This is a group within the school which can influence or support the direction the school is taking, school policies and programs. It’s an opportunity to really make a meaningful contribution to the school. School councils or boards have varying degrees of responsibility according to the type of school e.g. public schools, private schools, community schools and some religion based schools.
School Council or Board members will usually have a fixed period of membership and one will often read of nominations being called for through the school newsletter. If you are truly interested ask the principal about when new members will be sought.
The majority of councils are considered advisory which means that major decision will be taken by the principal in conjunction with the overarching state departments or commissions.
Principals however, depend on their councils for broad advice and as a reflection of views of the school community.
Some opportunities for parent involvement are membership of ongoing sub-committees such as Parents’ and Friends’ Association, Fundraising Committee and Alumnae Association. Some focused sub-committees are formed to assist the school in achieving certain projects such as a Building Committee.
No matter what your interests or skills there is always somewhere you can support the whole school. You will have fun and the school will benefit.