A Guide to Positive Relationships with SEN Parents

At Initial Education Recruitment, we know that strong partnerships between teachers and parents are crucial for every child’s success. This is especially true for children with Special Educational Needs (SEN). Navigating their unique learning journeys requires a team effort, built on a foundation of trust, open communication, and collaborative problem-solving.

That’s why we’ve put together this guide to help teachers build positive relationships with SEN parents:

Active Listening, Not Empty Promises

Listen with empathy: Acknowledge their concerns and anxieties without judgment. Put yourself in their shoes – navigating the SEN landscape can be overwhelming.

Focus on understanding: Ask open-ended questions to delve deeper into their child’s strengths, challenges, and home environment. This helps tailor learning strategies for consistent support across both settings.

Avoid jargon: Stick to clear, concise language, explaining any technical terms you use. Remember, you’re a team, not a translator.

Communication – A Two-Way Street

Regular updates: Don’t wait for formal meetings. Share progress reports, anecdotes, and observations through emails, phone calls, or even online platforms.

Be proactive: Reach out not just for negative news. Highlight positive achievements, no matter how small. Celebrating successes together strengthens the bond.

Embrace feedback: Encourage parents to share their input on strategies, resources, and even classroom adjustments. Collaboration thrives on shared expertise.

Transparency and Trust

Be honest and open: Address concerns head-on, even if the news is challenging. Transparency fosters trust and allows for joint problem-solving.

Share clear goals: Explain how you’re working towards these goals in the classroom and how they connect to home activities. Consistency is key.

Acknowledge limitations: No one has all the answers. Be open to seeking additional support or resources together, demonstrating a willingness to learn and grow alongside the parents.

Building on Strengths

Focus on the child’s potential, not just the disability: Highlight their unique talents, interests, and learning styles. Celebrating strengths empowers both the child and their parents.

Work together to identify their interests: Collaborate with parents to find engaging activities and learning methods that resonate with the child’s passions. This makes learning more meaningful and enjoyable.

Remember, they are the experts: Parents have intimate knowledge of their child’s needs and preferences. Value their insights and leverage their expertise to create a truly personalised learning experience.

By actively building positive relationships with SEN parents, teachers and teaching assistants can create a supportive and collaborative environment where children with special needs can thrive. Remember, open communication, empathy, and a shared commitment to the child’s success are the cornerstones of building bridges, not walls, in the SEN classroom. At Initial Education Recruitment, we’re passionate about connecting exceptional teachers and teaching assistants with schools that value collaboration and celebrate diversity. If you’re an educator dedicated to supporting SEN students, we’d love to hear from you!

If you’re looking for a new challenge in a new school, we would love to hear from you!

Complete our online form and a member of the team will be in touch! Click here for the online form or give us a call on 01452 740001.