Working with recommendations: Communities and Culture

GETTING PRACTICAL: Understanding your community and its assets

Activity: Enlarge a map of the area surrounding your school – ensure that it is at an appropriate scale to include the areas where the majority of young people live. 

Work collaboratively to plot on your map:

  • Community & resource centres
  • Places of worship
  • Food banks
  • Libraries
  • Places with free wifi access
  • Third sector and charity organisations that support newly arrived families
  • Children’s centres, play groups and family centres
  • Adult or family language and learning classes
  • Leisure facilities
  • Health and wellbeing centres
  • Counselling & Mental health support centres
  • Any other community assets that may be of interest to newly arrived parents
  • Neighbouring schools that you may want to build relationships with to support families to transition from one school to the next or with whom you might share resources/expertise/experience/assets
  • Try also to map languages spoken in different areas of the community


Review your map and consider:-

  • What have you learned about your community and its assets?
  • To what extent does your community already participate in the work you do in school? In what ways would you like to increase that involvement?
  • Which new organisations could you begin to build partnerships with in support of your work with newly arrived families?
  • How will work in this area feed into wider school development? Where will you record your development priorities? What will success look like? How will you include parents in formulating priorities and agreeing success criteria?
  • How will you track and monitor progress against your stated development aims? How will you share this information with your community? How will you celebrate success?



Contextual Knowledge

  • What do you know about the legal frameworks within which newly arrived families operate within your specific country or regional setting? Use the EPA tool to check your understanding? – http://info.parenthelp.eu 
  • What countries of origin do your community population draw from? How different are the education systems in originating countries? How might these differences impact on expectations parents bring to the system they are now experiencing?
  • What information do you provide to parents about the education system in your country? How do you help them to understand how to entitlements, expectations, access to resources so that they are able interact with the system in ways that achieves the best outcomes for the young people they are responsible for?
  • What non-educational basic needs might families have that you and your community could help to address?
  • What do you currently do to facilitate peer to peer support? In what areas could peer to peer support be really effective? What could you do to support development of effective peer to peer support networks?

Useful links (UK)