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How to convince parents a whole school production is a good thing?

Discussion in 'Music' started by Lizzy71, Jan 20, 2012.

  1. We are planning a whole school musical in the summer. The first we have done for 3 years. All songs will be taught in class music/whole school singing. Main drama rehearsals are in an after school club. Parents are still moaning on about "wasting schooltime"....how can we convince them of the benefits of doing this?
  2. We are planning a whole school musical in the summer. The first we have done for 3 years. All songs will be taught in class music/whole school singing. Main drama rehearsals are in an after school club. Parents are still moaning on about "wasting schooltime"....how can we convince them of the benefits of doing this?
  3. Perhaps parents don't realise the educational value of performances such as these - it might simply be that this has not been explained to them. However, it might be that they are moaning for a reason which goes beyond the meer fact of a musical.
    I'm not sure what KS we are talking about here. And whether we are talking about all parents or a particular group. My daughter's primary school does whole KS shows both in the summer and at Christmas. These are very successful and highly regarded - however it has recently been noted that rehearsals were tkaing up whole afternoons of class 3 (year 4, 5 and 6!) and the perception was growing that the main teacher involved used rehearsals as "easy" lessons rather than having to plan work. I don't know if that is actually the case, however it was the perception.
    I used to work in PR in the voluntary sector and I have to say that every school I have worked in has roundly failed to effectively manage the perceptions of, and their relationship with, parents. Some heads I have spoken too have not seen any need for this at all.
    I'm not connected with your school, but I think the question should be asked: "why do parents feel this way about the show?" Is it that they don't see the benefits of the show itself? Or is there some other worry they have about the school which the show will simply make worse?
    What is for certain is that without parental support this will be very difficult.
  4. Hmm, some interesting comments thanks.
    We are talking primary and whole of primary. We are a small school. The main parts are all KS2 and upper KS2 really. It is actually just a small group of parents I think (head being a bit vague on the subject!)
    The school was in special measures a few years ago and I know some parents blamed the fact that a production was done that year (I was not there at the time...). The reasons for special measures clearly were not to do with a production.....they would have existed with or without it (mostly linked to the way the school was organised) and all the parents who fussed then have actually left (childen gone to secondary) The school is now well out of SM..was out in about 14 months...last OFSTED was good with some bits outstanding...
    We have tried to explain the benefits of this but clearly have failed to do so! We have also pointed out that the bulk of rehearsals will be after school or in class music/whole school singing....but to no avail.....Hmm, maybe need to find a better way to help them see...the children are VERY excited about it! It's also not happening till the penultimate week of the summer term...so will not impact on the SATS (dreadful things)
  5. jonowen

    jonowen Occasional commenter

    Hi Lizzy,
    I really sympathise with you - stroppy parents are worse than their stroppy offspring! How about a bit of a compromise - can the children learn some/all of the words at home? That way the parents are kept in the picture about the show and see the amount of work required to produce a fantastic show. What I suspect is that not all the parents will step up to this challenge and then you say "Well, we need to use school time for this or the show will not be as good as we know it should be"...........or words to that effect.
    Joni x
  6. You will always get someone who doesn't like what you are doing. I think you need to communicate to parents the advantages for the children involved and how important a creative curriculum is for the children. Performing and singing help children in so many ways - not only is a great way to support all areas of the curriculum, but it is also proven to help improve chldren's memories, confidence, health and social development, it strengthen bonds, and can instill a feeling of welbeing - it's also great fun, and children learn best when they enjoy what they are doing! If you go to the Sing Up website and look up some of the magazine articles, you will see information about schools that have used singing and performance to improve outcomes for children across the whole school and curriculum and had amazing results.
  7. gilly33

    gilly33 New commenter

    I agree with other posts about stressing the compatibility of the show with curriculum. I would love my childs school to be more involved with music, drama etc. You could provide a short factsheet aimed at children but sent home to parents. A type of did you know. Confidence booster has to be on there, as does a chance for kids to shine at something other than academic subjects. I wish you luck and wish you were at my childs school.
  8. gilly33

    gilly33 New commenter

    Sorry, I have just thought.
    Some parents I know don't like their routine altered, as in collecting children later after school. Also the penultimate week of a term is when some parents (never me) take children out of school for holidays. If their child had a part it would be impossible for them to do this. Other parents also might worry you'll ask them for help or money for costumes and tickets. This is typical of schools my kids have gone to and those I previously worked at
  9. I'm actually flaling off my chair in astonishment! Parents, take their children out of school early to get cheaper holidays - who would ever have heard of such a thing. BE WARNED - they will do this whether the child is in a play or not!!! And at short notice, and without asking permission from the school. They will even lie about medical conditions and illnesses - or simply not communicate with the school about it at all.
    I've had it happen to me more times than I can count.
    One way to stop some is to make sure the Head has the cast list as soon as it is finalised and that he/she knows which children can not be spared - and that this list is checked before any absense is agreed.
    MOST PARENTS DON'T CARE.if it's a choice between £200 off a holiday and perky peter having a go on the stage.
  10. gilly33

    gilly33 New commenter

    You are so right and I hate it. I know this is off the subject a little. When our older children were at there tiny little country school 30 in total, we turned up monday morning the week before summer and they were the only children there. They had a brilliant week as the teachers were great and offered to carry on regardless.
  11. Thanks for the advice! Parents have all been told when the show is and all those wanting main parts have been told that their children MUST be in school on those days (although not if ill clearly!)...seems it is just a few moaning so fingers crossed all will go ok..We have started learning the songs and the children love them already and go home singing them so that is good news!
  12. jonowen

    jonowen Occasional commenter

    Good luck Lizzy! That is good news that you have resolved this matter and created a win-win situation.
    there's always one..............or a few!

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