The Courier-Mail

Par­ents told to stop do­ing their kids’ home­work

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por­tant than the fam­ily’s fi­nan­cial sta­tus, The Smith Fam­ily char­ity has said.

In a re­newed push to get par­ents in­volved in their child’s school day, The Smith Fam­ily gen­eral man­ager Alan Le May said par­ents needed to take an ac­tive in­ter­est, even if they weren’t up to help­ing with home­work.

“I think the worst case sce­nario is where a par­ent feels that they are over­whelmed per­haps be­cause of their pre­vi­ous ex­pe­ri­ence at school or be­cause they didn’t per­form well at school them­selves,” he said.

“They feel like they are not able to mean­ing­fully en­gage with their child.”

Mr Le May said some par­ents may not re­alise just how im­por­tant par­ent en­gage­ment was for their child.

“It’s not just about do­ing maths and science, it’s just about en­gag­ing in the broader sense… at­tend­ing par­ent meet­ings and talk­ing to them in the car about school.”

He said the home learn­ing en­vi­ron­ment was the big­gest fac­tor in a child’s ed­u­ca­tion, even more im­por­tant than the fam­ily’s fi­nan­cial sta­tus.

P&Cs Queens­land chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Ke­van Good­worth said par­ents were the first and fun­da­men­tal teach­ers of a child.

“Whether or not they have a high level of ed­u­ca­tion, what par­ents can do in any way helps,” Mr Good­worth said.

He said even if par­ents were un­able to help out with home­work, they were still ex­tremely im­por­tant.

“By the time a child reaches Year 10 or 11, most of what they are do­ing is some­thing par­ents can’t help them with, un­less they are a sci­en­tist, his­to­rian or for­eign lan­guage ex­pert,” he said. “The most im­por­tant thing is to pro­vide an en­vi­ron­ment where learn­ing is val­ued and sup­ported.”

Mum-of-six Re­becca Dun­well homeschool­s her eldest chil­dren and said she al­ways en­cour­aged them to read, par­tic­i­pate and learn life skills.

“It’s im­por­tant that par­ents are will­ing to step up to the mark and show they are in­ter­ested,” she said.

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