The system of School Boards was replaced in August 2007 by a new system of Parent Councils. The Scottish Schools (Parental Involvement) Act 2006 makes provision for all parents to be members of the parent forum at a school and to have their views represented to the school, education authority and others through a representative Parent Council for the school.
The intention behind the new legislation is to support parental involvement in a much wider sense than before. It aims to help all parents to be:
- Involved with their child’s education and learning
- Welcomed as active participants in the life of the school
- Encouraged to express their views on school education generally and work in partnership with the school
The main changes are as follows:
- The school’s parent body (the new parent forum) will decide the size and composition of their Parent Council
- The method of appointing (and co-opting) Parent Council members will be decided by the parents. In denominational schools and church nominee must be co-opted
- The Parent Council will be required to support school management in improving the quality of education the school provides and develop to their fullest potential the personality, talents and mental and physical abilities of the pupils attending the school
- The Parent Council will develop and engage in activities, which support the education and welfare of pupils
- The Parent Council can ascertain views of parents on any matter of interest or concern
- The present system of approval of Head Teacher spend on books and teaching materials, subject to authority guidance and policy, will be discontinued
- In future, if representations made to an authority or Head Teacher remain unresolved a Parent Council may then make them to HMIE
- The Head Teacher has both a duty and a right to attend Parent Councils meetings
The Parent Council will still have a role in the appointment of Head Teachers and Depute Head Teachers.
Further information on the Act is available on www.parentzonescotland.gov.uk