Parenting and Parent Support Partners
Schools should provide access to parenting support, including information sessions around transition, signposting to services, parenting groups and family learning sessions. To find out more contact your child’s school.
Information for parents carers and families
We know that sometimes family life can be challenging and difficult but parents and carers want to do the best they can for their children. Parent Support Partners (PSPs) work in partnership with parents and carers to find a way to deal with any worries and concerns about how your child is doing in school.
We don't have all the answers but we can help you work out how to find them!
Parenting Support and Information
We can provide free support, information and advice on a range of issues such as:
- Concerns about your child's behaviour
- Problems at school
- Transition between schools
- Family issues such as bereavement, separation, financial worries
School Attendance and Exclusion
We can work with you to identify reasons for non-attendance and provide individualy tailored packages of support
Access and Engagement with School
We can work with you in a school context to support and help you engage with your child's learning.
What can your Parent Support Partner offer?
- Friendly, non-judgemental support and advice
- One-to-one support
- Opportunities to meet with other parents/carers through regular events
- Partnership working with the family
- Support to express your concerns to school
- Support to manage your child's behaviour
- Opportunities to learn as a family
- Access to parenting programmes and workshops
- Information on child development
- Help in returning to work or training
- Help to access housing, debt and benefit advice
- Support with integration into community services
- Signposting and information about a wide range of support services
Quotes from parents:
"It has made a real difference having someone come out to our home where we feel comfortable"
"We now have lots of fun! The PSP helped me
and my son work together. It has really helped"
"I feel much more confident as a Mum"
Find you local Parent Support Partner
Or for further information please contact Kathy Kirsopp-Reed Parenting, Family Learning and Childcare Liaison Officer, Extended Services.
Day in the life of a PSP
I start the day at my office which is in the local High School. After checking my phone messages and emails I head out to support a single Mum to get her youngest boy to school. His attendance is very low and Mum struggles to ensure he attends regularly. Last week I helped Mum plan a morning routine that would work for her family. As today is the first day it is in action, I am going along as moral support. By 9.15am all three children are safely in school and Mum and I are reflecting on what worked well.
Next I pop in to see a family who have recently separated. Their daughter is struggling to cope in school and her behaviour has deteriorated at home. Both parents are overcompensating and all rules and boundaries at home have disappeared. We discuss the importance of boundaries and consequences and how to implement changes consistently now Mum and Dad aren’t living together. We arranged to meet again next week as a whole family to look at developing a set of family rules and I am confident that their daughter’s behaviour will settle down soon if Mum and Dad can keep working together.
Back at the High School I attend a meeting with a range of different organisations to plan the delivery of parenting programmes for the next two terms. We hope to deliver Triple P, Strengthening Families and a range of engagement workshops for parents every term if there is the demand. These courses help parents understand they are not alone in their problems and supports them to try new strategies to overcome the challenges they face.
Time for a quick lunch then I catch up with the Education Welfare Officer and deputy head at one of my schools regarding families they have referred to me. It is essential to maintain links with other services and ensure we are all working to the same goals to help families achieve success. However information can only be shared if it is in the best interests of the child and parents give consent.
Next up I attend a Special Educational Needs review at with a family I have been supporting. By helping the family to understand the education system and their child’s rights relations with school have slowly improved. The meeting goes smoothly and after some initial tension Mum and Dad communicate their concerns and hopes effectively and the school work with them to make a plan and set goals for the next year.
My last visit of the day is to a family where both parents work so visits need to be made after 5pm. Their teenage son is a school refuser and is becoming increasingly withdrawn from family and friends. We complete a Common Assessment Framework form as their son needs a range of interventions which the Parent Support Partner alone cannot provide. The next step will be to arrange a ‘team around the child’ meeting with the family and professionals to determine who is best placed to provide support and set an action plan.
I head home my mind spinning with the list of tasks I need to complete tomorrow. Working with families can be difficult but it is also very rewarding and enjoyable.
FURTHER LOCAL INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE BY CONTACTING:
01670 798 830
Behavior Support Service
01670 534 320
and Children’ Trust
01670 533 878
0800 023 4440
For children and young people with additional needs in Northumberland, a guide to local and national services can be downloaded from the FACT website: