The Family-School Relationships in Europe: A Research Review

  • Paola Dusi
Keywords: Benefits and difficulties, European perspective, Individual behaviour, Institutional frameworks, School-family relationship, Social orientations

Abstract

The literature on research carried out in the field and parents’ and teachers’ declarations all point in the same direction: good collaboration between home and school is useful to the child-student for his education and learning. Despite this, parent-teacher relationships in Europe (and elsewhere), from Spain to Sweden, from Ireland to Greece, and from Italy to the Czech Republic, represent an unresolved issue. This is a complex relationship that calls into play various social spheres: macro (social), intermediary (institutional) and micro (relational); in fact, there are as many diverse realities as there are schools. In Europe, the relationship
between individual behaviours (parents vs. teachers), social orientations (neoliberalism) and institutional frameworks (school markets) appears significant: scarce parental participation, lack of adequate forms of home-school communications, and the need to make investments in
parent and teacher training. Nevertheless, family and school are called on to create a dialogue in order to contribute to the processes of training new generations. They both need each other in order to carry out that task in the best way. This paper presents and discusses the results of a theoretical analysis conducted on the basis of the international literature
concerning research on the school-family relationship, with particular attention on the situation of different European countries, and concludes with suggestions for some practical improvements. 

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Published
2012-03-31