Read, Write, Count collaborative partnership to support family learning and parental engagement
This collaborative partnership with the Scottish Book Trust and the City of Edinburgh Schools, Psychological Services and Lifelong Learning departments supports family learning approaches to promote parental engagement with young people’s learning, using the resources provided by the national Read, Write, Count initiative.
What was the problem?
The poverty-related attainment gap is a significant challenge in Scottish education, which is a national priority set out by the Scottish Government. The collaborative group ‘Moray House Read, Write, Count’ was set up in 2016 to bring together different groups with a shared interest in closing the poverty-related attainment gap through promoting parental engagement with young people’s learning. The group name derived from materials provided to every child in Scotland in Primary 1, 2 and 3 through the Read, Write Count book gifting initiative. The project is part of a commitment to responsible research and innovation in which the ‘users’ of research are involved in setting the research agenda and the research process.
- Scottish Government’s 2019 National Improvement Framework and Improvement Plan
- Read, Write Count book gifting initiative
What did we do?
Each year the group identifies a new problem facing practitioners, or a gap in knowledge, which could be addressed through a collaborative project. Sometimes the project is a practical one, in other years we have carried out research on issues identified by the collaborative group. Previous projects led by the Moray House Read, Write, Count are described on our Professional Learning webpages:
- Parental engagement – equity and equality
- Understanding the links between home and primary school
- Master’s dissertation research in partnership with City of Edinburgh
- Engaging pre-service teachers to advance parental engagement and develop their practice
What happened next?
Guidance for teachers and other practitioners to support a Family Learning Approach
Barbara Middleton and Gale Macleod have delivered a series of CPD sessions on family learning approaches hosted by Scottish Book Trust, City of Edinburgh and Moray House Professional Learning. They also spoke to an Education Scotland ‘Wee Blether’ on the project. In May 2021 members of the Collaborative were invited to speak to the local authority Scottish Attainment Challenge Advisors and delivered training to teachers and CLD workers from the South East Improvment Collaborative.
- Video: Webinar Using RWC resources to support a Family Learning Approach - Video Asset
- Webinar Using RWC resources to support a Family Learning Approach - Video Asset
Developing the Bag Unpacked video series for families and children
In December 2020 we received funding from the University of Edinburgh’s College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences Knowledge Exchange Grant to allow us to produce videos to be shared directly with parents to support them to access the Read Write Count resources with their children. Gale presented on the project and preliminary evaluation to the Scottish Government Learning Together National Network.
- Video: Welcome to the Primary 3 Bag Unpacked video series
- This video introduces the Read Write Count Primary 3 Back Unpacked video series
Learn more about the Moray House Read Write Count Collaborative and the Bag Unpacked video series sharing ideas of activities for families to take part in together to advance children's learning from the two Primary 3 Read, Write, Count books:
Alongside these collaborative projects, Gale Macleod and Lyn Tett have carried out research into parents’, headteachers’ and family learning professionals’ views of family learning work. This work has been published and these publications have been used to support CPD delivered by local authorities.
- Read the article ‘Enacting home-school partnerships: The roles of headteachers, family-learning practitioners and parents’ (Tett and MacLeod, 2020)
- Read the article ‘I had some additional angel wings’: Parents positioned as experts in their children’s education (MacLeod and Tett, 2019)
The research has been referenced by Education Scotland. Lyn and Gale were also invited to present a ‘wee blether’ for Education Scotland on their work, and they have provided input for Scottish Borders Council Headteacher away days.