Divorced Dads Not Involved, But Is It Really The School’s Fault?April 12, 2010 No Comments
Research in Australia has shown that “non-residential parents”, that is, mostly the divorced dads, don’t have enough involvement with their kids’ schools. They recommend teachers do more to involve dads.
This is good in theory, but seriously, whose fault is this? If the dads want more involvement it’s up to them to ask for it.
Research led by Professor Brown found that about two-thirds of non-residential parents – which are, in most cases, fathers – said they did not receive anything from the school, not even school reports.
About the same number said they did not receive notices for events or information about parent-teacher interviews and felt ”marginalised” and treated unequally compared to the resident parent. The study, involving interviews with parents and primary schools across Australia, is in an article published in the latest issue of Children Australia journal.
If dads do feel marginalised then it’s great that the schools are going to develop policies to get them more involved.
However, it’s up to the mother and father of the child to work out who goes to which school event, who gets school newsletters, and who goes to parent-teacher interviews.
It they both want to that’s great, but it’s up to the dads to talk to the teachers and ask to be on the mailing lists. They can’t possibly expect schools manage this without the direct involvement of the parents themselves.
It’s time to stop blaming the schools for being old-fashioned and blame the fathers for not kicking up enough fuss.
Yes, there may be some horror stories, such as “a child was told he could only do homework at his mother’s house, not his dad’s house, so it was easier to keep track of”, but these are few and far between.
We’ve all heard of the mothers who fight tooth and nail to get the best of everything for their children; they may be pushy but they know what they want and they know how to get it. If dads are feeling marginalised it’s up to them to fight for their rights. It’s as simple as a phone call to the school or a meeting with the teacher to let them know there will be two newsletters and two report cards.
Basically, dads need to stop whining and get actively involved with the schools, that’s the only way change is going to happen. And if they don’t, well then perhaps it didn’t bother them that much after all.