Activate your P & C to help promote the inclusion of your child at school
Inclusion involves the whole school community, and benefits ALL students. Parents play an important role in raising and bringing attention to issues that might be impacting their children with disability within their school.
When parents work together, they can identify common issues and collaborate to improve their local school – in both government and non-government settings. A powerful way to do this is by setting up an inclusion sub-committee in your school’s P & C (Parents and Citizens) Association.*
Here are some tips to help you get started:
- Anyone can put a subcommittee together, and once a subcommittee is formed, they have to report and everything is minuted. It’s another way of making the school better and increase wellbeing of all students.
- Progress from the informal groups and get-togethers into a more formal format – eg keep your first outing a small goal to test the waters and see who are your allies. Start small and it will inherently change things generally.
- Start the conversation – attend the P&C meetings, garner support from established groups and other parents (not just parents with disability) who attend the P&C, build up allies.
- Get allies amongst the teachers, the learning and support team, SLSO, other staff.
Here are some resources to assist you:
- This guide prepared by Family Advocacy aims to provide you with the what, why and how to start an inclusion sub-committee in your school’s P & C, focusing on making sure all children and families feel included. The “what” and “why” of inclusive education to lay the foundations, and the “how” will provide you with practical tools and tips.
- This letter was sent by a parent advocate to his school community at the start of the year, introducing his P&C's Inclusive Education sub-committee.
- This quick member info document by the P & C federation has useful information about subcommittees
- These slides were used by another parent to pitch the idea of a Diversity and Inclusion sub-committee for her P & C. The parent also shared that the principal was more welcoming of the idea when broadened to other diverse groups, hence the name "Diversity and Inclusion".
- Family Advocacy's Access:Symposium website is packed with experience, insights, ideas and case studies exploring inclusive education.
- Join our “Same Classroom” Facebook group. The group is a place to share, exchange tips, stories, advice and help grow inclusive education in NSW.
- We also run webinars on this topic regularly. Follow our main Facebook page to stay informed.
* Also called "Parents and Friends Association" or "Parent Board" in some schools