The more families talk positively about school, the better children perform: their attendance increases, their motivation rises, and their classroom behaviour, happiness and outcomes all improve, too.
But despite all this, there are still barriers to communication between parents and teachers, and schools find it difficult to inspire parents with the correct information in the right way. Parental engagement with those who work or are separated is an added challenge, along with those who are negative or anxious about school, or that lack self-esteem or interest.
MarvellousMe is a user-friendly app that is increasing parental engagement in schools, acting as a conversation starter that contributes to engaging parents in raising achievement. This blog explores the background to the app’s creation, how it works, and how it improves outcomes for teachers, parents and pupils alike.
What is MarvellousMe?
MarvellousMe gives parents and guardians high-impact, learning-related and praise-led news in exciting, positive and personal ways. It’s different from other communication tools from teachers to parents and a brilliant way to add home re-enforcement to school reward systems.
It was created by Adrian Burt, a working father who was frustrated that his son’s school communications didn’t give him the information or sense of involvement he wanted. Visiting school to talk to teachers about his son’s progress was difficult, and his son was unwilling to provide any meaningful information himself.
The school’s communications were largely limited to general information like reminders or fundraising initiatives, and its learning platform and social media channels were confusing and impersonal from a parent’s perspective. This motivated Adrian to develop MarvellousMe as an enabler for free-flowing conversations and greater parental involvement in education.
Easy for parents and teachers
MarvellousMe is designed to be as user-friendly for teachers as it is for parents. There is no set-up work required from teachers, and parent replies are restricted to virtual ‘high-fives’ to reduce the potential for off-task or out-of-hours parent contact.
Teachers can (ideally) use it two or three times a week in summary sessions with their class, and it forms the digital equivalent like sending a learning postcard home or a school reward sticker. Notes are kept short for maximum impact, and teachers can add media, worksheets and even date-stamped homework.
Ultimately, MarvellousMe helps build a positive teacher-parent partnership, bringing families into the classroom and inspiring them to support the teacher’s hard work and reinforce their child’s progress.
Special for school leaders
As a whole-school solution, MarvellousMe allows all leaders to measure and manage. It empowers teachers to focus parental engagement on learning and their school reward system. It also makes it easy for them to ensure success in every class, and even quantify the progress of building parent engagement through cohorts like Pupil Premium and SEN children.
MarvellousMe can also automatically tally pupil reward points, including for house points in schools. This not only better involves parents and carers in their child’s achievements, but also streamlines school administration.
Pride-inspiring for parents and relatives
At the time of writing, over 700 schools across the country are using MarvellousMe, with an average parent engagement of 90%. MarvellousMe is also regularly highlighted in school reports for the contribution it is making to teachers, parents and pupils alike.
Every day, parents are full of praise for the platform, saying that they now get valuable information about their child’s progress and feel more involved in their school day. They also value the digital keepsakes that the rewards system generates for them, helping to chart their child’s journey through primary school.
MarvellousMe joins Juniper Education
MarvellousMe is now part of the Juniper Education family, and is one of a range of solutions that can improve outcomes, increase parental involvement in schools and ease administration for teachers, pupilss and parents.
“MarvellousMe is a great addition to our innovative Juniper Websites offering, alongside our market-leading Primarysite and e4education website brands,” said Gavin Freed, Juniper’s Executive Chairman and CEO. “Around a third of schools in England already use Juniper’s well-respected assessment trackers. With the addition of MarvellousMe, schools can now enable the ‘missing link’ to give parents real-time classroom insight and information about their child’s progress and achievements with minimal teacher effort.”