Home School Link Worker
Engaging parents and carers in their child's education is a key factor of the child's success, however, some families can experience barriers to being involved in their child's school. This could be due to parents feeling isolated if they are new to the area or not confident in speaking English, feeling intimidated by schools after a bad experience at school themselves, coping with a problem at home or work or other responsibilities which make it difficult to contact the school.
By quickly and effectively building strong, trusting relationships, our Home School Link Worker can help solve problems before they become bigger issues. Families can see school as a friendly approachable place and somewhere they can meet other parents, take up a parenting or family learning course or even volunteer at the school.
Hello, my name is Niamh Burke and I am the Home School Link Worker here at
St. Anne’s Catholic Primary School.
My aim is to ensure that all children enjoy school and are happy and secure. I work in partnership with parents/carers, schools and other agencies, supporting our
St. Anne’s families to reduce any current stressful situations and prevent any future difficulties.
My purpose is to:
- support parents, families and pupils on a wide range of issues
- help children and families to increase school attendance and punctuality
- promote positive behaviour
- develop and maintain positive, amenable relationships and connections between home and school
How can I help your family?
The Home School Link Worker (HSLW) role is shaped to support the needs of your family and your circumstances and can help in many ways, including:
- Enabling parents and children to comfortably talk over concerns or worries in a safe and secure environment
- Supporting families reacting to change such as parental separation or bereavement
- Assisting parents/carers whose children are reluctant to attend school or have been excluded
- Helping parents/carers who may need support with issues or difficulties that are impacting their family life e.g., illness, domestic abuse, disability or financial difficulties
- Signposting families to access valuable services, resources, activities and local community information
- Supporting young carers
- Offering support in school meetings
- Liaising with outside agencies such as the School Nurse, CAMHS, Health Visitors, GPs etc.
- Help with completing forms and documentation for benefit applications etc.
How to contact the HSLW
Parents/carers, school colleagues and children can ask me to be involved if support is required. Together we will explore any concerns and identify the best way forward.
Contact can be made with me by email at:
phone 01932 562251 (option 3) or simply by catching me in the playground before or after school.
The Home School Link Worker offers a confidential service regarding personal issues. However, all information is shared with the Senior Leadership Team as part of our confidentiality policy.
If necessary, The Home School Link Worker will seek your permission to also share the information with other staff members within school or outside agencies.
Should a safeguarding issue be identified, we are legally bound to follow Government guidelines.
Useful links to organisations offering family support:
- Place2Be: Parenting Smart: Articles the mental health charity Place2Be has a parenting section called ‘Parenting Smart’. Here you can find advice on many topics related to mental health, emotional support and common issues at home.
- Surrey's Family Information Services provides information, advice and assistance for families with children.
- Childline offer Calm Zone, supporting children through breathing exercises, activities, games and videos to help let go of stress.
- Family Voice Surrey supports families of children and young people with additional needs in Surrey.
- Family Lives is a charity with over three decades of experience helping parents with challenging family life.
- North Surrey Domestic Abuse Service offers confidential support.
- Think U Know aims to protect children online, staying safe when you're on a phone, tablet or computer.
- Surrey Young Carers, support for young people helping to care for someone in the family who has an illness, a disability, or is affected by mental ill-health or alcohol/substance misuse.
- Citizens Advice UK's largest advice-giving charity, providing trusted, quality assured, independent advice to the nation.
- Runnymede Foodbank, aiming to provide a lifeline for families experiencing financial hardship, who are desperately short of food.
- Surrey Adult Learning, free courses and workshops for parents, carers and grandparents to help you create a better family life.