Although most of us believe that parent involvement is a good thing, we too understand that too much of a good thing can be a bad thing. Yes, when you look at the role in which parents play when it comes to education and social interactions there are definitely pros and cons of parent involvement. Let’s take a deeper look at some of those pros and cons or parent involvement with our children.
Pros to Parent Involvement
Every parent has their own way of doing things and for the most part teachers would agree that parent involvement in the form of volunteering and supporting the children is welcomed and needed. Here are some benefits of having parent helpers:
•Teachers are always short handed and an extra pair of hands in the classroom is usually needed. If a parent that is professional comes into the classroom they can get many of the tasks accomplished that the teacher needs done. And a teacher can count on a professional parent to do the job well.
•Parents that volunteer and come into the classroom to help the children can take small groups of children to focus on a specific area of need. Parent involvement can help teachers with students that are behind in reading or writing. It can give those students the extra one on one help they need that a teacher of 20+ students cannot give.
•With parent helpers in the school it gives them a chance to see teacher teaching styles and also gives them opportunities to see other ways of dealing with problems that may have more success than what they are doing at home. It’s always great for parents to come in and learn too.
•Another benefit to having parent involvement is that is shows kids that they are important enough to their parent or guardian to take time out of their day to come in and help. Although they may not vocally say that they love it when you come to help, they really do appreciate a parents effort to be more involved.
•Parent involvement also gives other parents a chance to get to know one another and establish relationships with other people in the community. Getting to know the parents of students is just as important as getting to the students themselves.
Cons to Parent Involvement
Of course there is always a flip side to something good. Unfortunately when some parents come into the schools to work or volunteer their time they provide more of a distraction and nuisance than anything else. Here are some cons to have too much or not the right kind of parent involvement:
•Some parents simply come into the school so that they can get the “low down” on other students or student parents. You can already see the negative repercussions of this type of involvement on multiple students and their families. This doesn’t help a teacher or the school
•Some parents that volunteer their time don’t actually get anything they’ve been asked to do because they’re too busy talking with other parents or faculty members.
Sometimes having a parent in the classroom can be more disruptive than the students as some parents don’t follow instructions and like to take “instruction” into their own hands. •A teacher can lose valuable time redirecting the parent to something else.
Some parents are very critical about how a teacher is teaching their child than what they are really there for, and that is to help the teacher, not hinder them.
As you can see there are many pros and cons to parent involvement and it largely depends on the parent and their willingness to come into the school, do what they are asked, and leave when they are finished. Teaching young children isn’t an easy job and educators need helpful, supportive parents on their quest for successful teaching.