The Grove Academy

Revolutionising Parental Engagement with MarvellousMe

The Grove Academy Logo

MarvellousMe is a parental engagement app that makes it easy for teachers to tell parents about their child’s learning and achievements.

The Grove Academy

About the Academy 

The Grove Academy, located in the heart of Watford, is a proud member of Aspire Academies Trust, which is a small trust consisting of 6 academies. The Grove Academy is a three-form entry primary school with around 400 pupils in Years 1-6. The school is proud of its broad and diverse community and has five core values, which endeavour to develop children into well-rounded, respectful and responsible citizens.   

Since adopting MarvellousMe, our parent engagement has been at an all-time high.
The Grove Academy Logo
Ria Fenton Assistant Principal at The Grove Academy

What prompted change at The Grove Academy

Before MarvellousMe, The Grove Academy faced a persistent issue of low parental engagement. Traditional tools, such as reading records, were met with challenges from lost entries to incomplete documentation. Weekly newsletters failed to bridge the communication gap between the school and parents, with only a very small amount of parents reading it. This prompted the school to seek an alternative solution to enhance communication and boost parent interaction.  

The launch of MarvellousMe

Recognising the value of MarvellousMe, the school said yes to the solution. In April 2021, MarvellousMe was introduced to both the school and the broader community, through various launch initiatives organised and managed by Gary Wicks and Ria Fenton (Assistant Principals at The Grove Academy).  

To kick off the creative introduction, pupils had a non-uniform day themed 'Marvellous Me', where every child showcased their unique personalities. This approach aimed to create a distinctive and engaging atmosphere; capturing the attention of parents and sparking curiosity among pupils. The launch generated excitement among the children and created a buzz that helped overcome previous challenges in parental engagement. The school strategically provided updates on MarvellousMe before the official launch, ensuring that parents had notifications waiting for them when they signed up and logged in for the first time. This proactive approach contributed to a successful and enthusiastic adoption of the platform. 

The comprehensive MarvellousMe policy 

Ria plays a key role in encouraging further MarvellousMe usage at the school and currently manages the system. She created a MarvellousMe policy, written to ensure the tool wasn't dormant but used by all teaching staff effectively and consistently. For example, by policy, staff must send 3 badges to every child every 2 weeks. While the policy has some basic requirements for using MarvellousMe, she proudly shares that, “most of our teachers go above and beyond the minimum requirements.”  

Living the schools' values with MarvellousMe 

The school employs a thoughtful strategy to reinforce its values. Posters and reminders of the school values are prominently displayed throughout the school premises, creating a consistent visual presence. The school also integrates its values into assemblies; creating a sense of community and shared principles. 

The 'Values Award' badge on MarvellousMe is awarded to individual pupils and allows teachers to leave comments specifying which value the child has demonstrated. This has really helped to promote and celebrate the school's core values. 

Positive parent feedback 

Parents responded positively to MarvellousMe, acknowledging its effectiveness in communication and engagement. While some expressed a desire for direct messaging with teachers, the school recognised the app's role in protecting teacher workload while facilitating meaningful communication. On this, Ria said:  

“We have received feedback that some of our parents don't like the fact that they can't message the teacher but I would say that's a good thing. I wouldn't want that to change. It protects teachers' workload by eliminating the need to respond to parents via an app.” 

Exceeding expectations  

When the school started using MarvellousMe, they set the ultimate target of getting 90% of parents signed up, which they recognised was ambitious. Today, the school are delighted to have reached that target, and now have an impressive 91% of parents signed up. Surpassing their goal reflects the school’s dedication to engaging parents and making the most of a great tool.  

Usage stats & insights 

The school, pupils and parents have really embraced MarvellousMe and the usage data speaks for itself:  

  • 385 children and 24 staff accounts  
  • Around 6,000 total MarvellousMe’s sent in a 30-day period  
  • 91% parent take-up  
  • 8 custom school badges created 

A transformative conclusion

MarvellousMe emerged as a transformative solution for The Grove Academy, reshaping the dynamics of parental engagement. The school successfully addressed the challenges of traditional communication methods by getting behind MarvellousMe in such a positive and proactive way. The new solution has led to improved communication, increased engagement, and has had a positive impact on pupil behaviour and learning. This case study exemplifies how the strategic implementation of EdTech can result in meaningful connections between schools and parents. 

Ria was asked about the overall impact MarvellousMe has had on the school, parents and pupils. She said: 

“Before MarvellousMe, the school had minimal engagement with parents, which was challenging. But now, since adopting MarvellousMe, our parent engagement has been at an all-time high, and parents get an insight into their child’s day at school. We hope to continue our success and keep our families connected and talking around the dinner table!” 

Better school-home communication for teachers, children and parents

MarvellousMe is designed to help primary schools engage with parents in a positive, inclusive way.

  • Communicate more effectively with your parents with fun real-time updates. 
  • Involve parents in their children’s learning and character growth. 
  • Big impact, no extra workload.