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SCOTTISH SCHOOLS (PARENTAL INVOLVEMENT) ACT 2006

Acts of the Scottish Parliament

Version 14/06/2006

2006 asp 8

Default Geographical Extent: S


  • Involvement , ambitions , objectives and performance (P)
  • Parent Forums and Parent Councils (P)
  • Duties , reports , appointments and complaints (P)
  • Combined Parent Councils (P)
  • Miscellaneous and general
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  • Version 12/09/2006
  • Version 14/06/2006

Introductory Text

Scottish Schools (Parental Involvement) Act 2006

2006 asp 8

The Bill for this Act of the Scottish Parliament was passed by the Parliament on 10th May 2006 and received Royal Assent on 14th June 2006

An Act of the Scottish Parliament to make further provision for the involvement of parents in their children's education and in school education generally; to provide for the establishment of councils to represent the parents of pupils attending public schools; to abolish School Boards; to make further provision as regards the appointment of teachers; to make further provision as regards the content of the development plan for a school; and for connected purposes.

Involvement , ambitions , objectives and performance (PROSPECTIVE)


1 Duty of Scottish Ministers and of education authorities to promote involvement of parents in school education etc

(1) It is the duty of the Scottish Ministers to promote the involvement of the parents of pupils in attendance at public schools in the education provided to those pupils by the schools.

(2) It is the duty of an education authority to promote the involvement of the parents of a pupil in attendance at a public school in the authority's area in the education provided by the school–

(a) to that pupil, and
(b) to its pupils generally.
(3) Except where the context otherwise requires, in this Act “education” means school education and includes such provision as is made by an education authority in fulfilment of their duty under section 1(3) (b) of the Education (Scotland) Act 1980 (c. 44) (duty to secure the provision of adequate facilities for social, cultural and recreative activities and for physical education and training).

2 Strategies for parental involvement

(1) Each education authority must prepare a document, to be known as their “strategy for parental involvement”, containing their general policies for implementing their duties under sections 1, 5, 11 and 12 (including, without prejudice to that generality, such implementation in the case of any pupil who is a child looked after by a local authority) ; and the complaints procedure established by the authority under section 15 must be set out in the document.

(2) In preparing their strategy for parental involvement, an education authority are to have regard to how that strategy will promote equal opportunities.

(3) An education authority–

(a) are from time to time to review their strategy for parental involvement, and
(b) are to revise that strategy whenever they conclude that it is appropriate to do so.
(4) In developing or reviewing their strategy for parental involvement an education authority must seek and have regard to the views of–

(a) the parents to whom those duties relate,
(b) pupils in attendance at public schools in the authority's area,
(c) any Parent Council established for a school in their area, and
(d) any other person who appears to the authority to have an interest in their implementation of those duties or of the duty under section 15(1).
(5) The document is to be included (whether or not it has been revised since last so included) in the authority's annual statement of improvement objectives.

(6) In section 5(2) of the Standards in Scotland's Schools etc. Act 2000 (asp 6) (requirement for annual statement of education improvement objectives to include an account of the ways in which the authority will seek to involve a pupil's parents in promoting the education of the pupil) , at the beginning of paragraph (a) there is inserted “ (prepared under section 2(1) of the Scottish Schools (Parental Involvement) Act 2006 (asp 8) as part of the authority's strategy for parental involvement) ”.

(7) The reference in subsection (1) to a child who is looked after by a local authority is to be construed in accordance with section 17(6) of the Children (Scotland) Act 1995 (c. 36) (duty of local authority to child looked after by them).

3 Ambitions and objectives for a school

In section 6(1) (a) of the Standards in Scotland's Schools etc. Act 2000 (asp 6) (which, for the purpose of securing improvement in the quality of education which a school provides, requires the preparation of a development plan for the school) –

(a) after the words “the objectives” there is inserted “ and strategy for parental involvement ”, and
(b) for the words “and sets objectives for the school” there is substituted “ , sets objectives for the school (including objectives as to the involvement of a pupil's parents in the education provided to the pupil and to the school's pupils generally) and contains a statement of the education authority's ambitions for the school ”.

4 Review of school performance

In section 7 of the Standards in Scotland's Schools etc. Act 2000 (asp 6) (which provides for the defining of measures and standards of performance as respects the quality of education provided by schools and for the quality of education provided by a school to be reviewed from time to time having regard to those measures and standards) , at the end there is added–

“(3) Without prejudice to the generality of subsections (1) and (2) above, in those subsections “ quality of education ” includes the extent to which a pupil's parents are involved in the education provided to the pupil.”.

Parent Forums and Parent Councils (PROSPECTIVE)


5 Parent Forum and Parent Council

(1) The parents of the pupils in attendance at a public school constitute (and are collectively to be known as) the “Parent Forum” of the school.

(2) A Parent Forum may be represented by a body (to be known as a “Parent Council”) established by them under section 6 for the school.

(3) The education authority are–

(a) to promote the establishment of, and
(b) to support the operation of,
a Parent Council.
(4) Subsection (3) is subject to section 16(15).

6 Scheme for establishment of a Parent Council

(1) For the purposes of section 5(2) and (3) (a) the education authority are to notify in writing the members of the Parent Forum of a public school in their area of the authority's intention to prepare a scheme for the establishment of a Parent Council for the school, inviting them to indicate, within such reasonable period as they are to specify in the notice, a preference as to how the council is to be constituted and what its constitution is to be; and the notice is to suggest alternatives in that regard framed in accordance with such guidance as may be issued by the Scottish Ministers but to state that those alternatives are offered only by way of example.

(2) But notification under subsection (1) is to include an invitation to indicate, instead of any such preference as is mentioned in that subsection, a preference either–

(a) that no such scheme should be prepared, or
(b) that any such scheme prepared should be prepared by a person other than the education authority.
(3) Having regard to such preferences as are indicated by virtue of subsection (1) and in so far as practicable giving effect to the preference of the greatest number of the members responding, the authority are, when the period specified under that subsection has expired, to prepare the scheme, to send a copy of it to each member and to make such arrangements as are necessary to implement it.

(4) But if the preference of the greatest number of the members responding before the period so specified has expired is as mentioned in–

(a) paragraph (a) of subsection (2) , subsection (3) is to be disregarded,
(b) paragraph (b) of subsection (2) , subsection (3) is to be disregarded and provided that the majority of the members so responding and indicating that preference can agree as to which person other than the authority is to prepare such a scheme, that person may proceed to do so and to send a copy of it to each of the members of the Parent Forum, inviting the member in question to indicate, within such reasonable period as the person may specify in the invitation, whether the member agrees that the scheme should be implemented.
(5) If the majority of the members who respond timeously to an invitation under subsection (4) (b) indicate agreement, the person who prepared the scheme may make such arrangements as are necessary to implement the scheme.

(6) The arrangements mentioned in subsections (3) and (5) must include the preparation of a constitution for the Parent Council.

(7) A Parent Council is established when first constituted by virtue of arrangements made under subsection (3) or (5) ; and is, as soon as practicable thereafter–

(a) to intimate to–
(i) the headteacher,
(ii) the members of the Parent Forum,
(iii) pupils in attendance at the school, and
(iv) such other persons as it appears to the council appropriate to include for the purposes of this subsection,
that it has been established,
(b) to provide them and the education authority with information as to who the members of the council are and as to how to communicate with it,
(c) if the education authority did not prepare the constitution of the council, to provide the education authority with a copy of that constitution, and
(d) to provide the headteacher with a copy of that constitution.
(8) A Parent Council is to be known as “the Parent Council” unless the Parent Forum otherwise determines, in which case it is to be known by whatever name the Parent Forum may specify.

(9) Intimation under subsection (7) (a) (ii) or (iv) is to include a note of the functions of the Parent Council under subsection (1) of section 8 and, where applicable, under subsection (2) of that section.

(10) The preceding provisions of this section are subject to sections 7 and 16(15).

7 Restrictions as to composition and chairing of a Parent Council

(1) Subject to subsection (2) , the members of the Parent Council established for a school must be members of the school's Parent Forum or (but only if and in so far as the constitution of the council so admits) persons who are co-opted to the council by the persons who for the time being are its members.

(2) In the case of a denominational school, the constitution of the council must provide for at least one of the council's members to be so co-opted and to be a person nominated by the church or denominational body in whose interest the school is conducted.

(3) In subsection (2) , “denominational school” means a school–

(a) transferred to an education authority under section 16(1) of the Education (Scotland) Act 1980 (c. 44) (transference of denominational schools to education authorities) , or
(b) provided by an education authority under section 17(2) of that Act (provision by education authority of denominational schools etc.).
(4) Only a person who is a member of a school's Parent Forum may chair a Parent Council established for that school.

8 Functions of a Parent Council

(1) The functions of the Parent Council established for a school are–

(a) to support the endeavours of those managing the school–
(i) to raise standards of education in the school,
(ii) to secure improvements in the quality of education which the school provides, and
(iii) to develop to their fullest potential the personality, talents and mental and physical abilities of the pupils attending the school,
(b) to make representations–
(i) to the school's headteacher and to the education authority about the arrangements in the school for promoting the involvement of parents in the education of such of those parents' own children (of whatever age) as attend the school and of its pupils generally,
(ii) to the education authority about the arrangements in their area for promoting the involvement of parents of pupils attending schools in that area in the education of such of those parents' own children (of whatever age) as so attend and of those pupils generally,
(c) to promote contact between–
(i) the school,
(ii) the Parent Forum,
(iii) parents of prospective pupils of the school,
(iv) pupils in attendance at the school,
(v) the community, and
(vi) such other persons as it appears to the council appropriate to include for the purposes of this paragraph,
(d) to report on the council's activities to the members of the Parent Forum, as often as appears to the council to be appropriate but in any event–
(i) not more than 12 months after the council is established, and
(ii) after that first report, at intervals of not more than 12 months,
(e) to ascertain the views of the members of the Parent Forum as regards–
(i) the standards of education in the school,
(ii) the quality of education which the school provides,
(iii) the exercise by the council of its functions, and
(iv) such other matters as appear to the council to be of interest or concern to the Parent Forum,
(f) to collate those views and report them to–
(i) the headteacher of the school,
(ii) the education authority, and
(iii) such other persons as it appears to the council appropriate to include for the purposes of this paragraph,
(g) to review from time to time its constitution, and
(h) with the requisite consent, to amend (or replace) the council's constitution whenever it appears to the council to be necessary or expedient to do so.
(2) In addition to the functions specified in subsection (1) , the Parent Council established for a primary school is to promote contact between–

(a) the Parent Forum of the school, and
(b) such providers of nursery education to prospective pupils of the school as appear to the council appropriate.
(3) For the purposes of subsection (2) (b) , a person is a provider of nursery education if providing education to pre-school children (within the meaning of section 1(4B) of the Education (Scotland) Act 1980 (c. 44) ).

(4) The Parent Council may, whether or not it has ascertained and collated the views of the members of the Parent Forum as regards a matter mentioned in paragraph (e) of subsection (1) , make representations to–

(a) the headteacher of the school,
(b) the education authority, or
(c) such other person as it appears to the council appropriate to include for the purposes of this subsection,
as regards that matter.
(5) But before making representations under paragraph (c) of subsection (4) to Her Majesty's inspectors the Parent Council—

(a) must have made those representations under paragraph (b) of that subsection and received a reply under section 11(7) (a) , and
(b) except in a case where it considers it inappropriate to do so, must have made those representations under paragraph (a) of that subsection and received a reply under section 11(7) (b).
(6) Where by virtue of subsection (5) Her Majesty's inspectors receive representations from a Parent Council they are to have regard to those representations (in so far as it is reasonable and practicable to do so) in carrying out their functions and are to reply to the council.

(7) In subsection (1) (h) , “requisite consent”–

(a) is consent obtained after each member of the Parent Forum has been sent a copy of the proposed amendment or replacement with an invitation to the member in question to indicate, within such reasonable time as the council may specify in the invitation, whether the member agrees to that amendment or replacement, and
(b) is the consent of the majority of such members of the parent forum as respond timeously to that invitation.
(8) If, by virtue of subsection (1) (h) , the Parent Council amends (or replaces) its constitution it must as soon as reasonably practicable provide–

(a) the education authority, and
(b) the headteacher,
with a copy of the constitution as amended (or of the new constitution).
(9) The Scottish Ministers may by order amend any of subsections (1) to (3) so as (either or both) –

(a) to add to the functions for the time being described,
(b) to alter any of those functions.
(10) Subject to any other provision made by this Act, the Parent Council may do anything which is calculated to facilitate the exercise of those functions including, without prejudice to that generality–

(a) entering into contracts and agreements (other than in relation to land) , and
(b) appointing a person to be clerk to the council.
(11) A person (other than a member of the Parent Council) who is appointed by virtue of subsection (10) (b) may be paid by the council.

(12) The members of the Parent Council do not incur personal liability for anything done, or purportedly done, in the exercise of those functions if it was done in good faith.

(13) In the exercise of those functions the Parent Council is to have regard to any guidance issued to it, for the purpose mentioned in subsection (14) , by the education authority.

(14) The purpose is of ensuring that any duty which the authority has–

(a) under statute, or
(b) by virtue of any rule of law,
is duly complied with.
(15) The Parent Council is to comply with any reasonable request made to it by the headteacher of the school or by the education authority for information relating to its exercise of those functions.

(16) A Parent Council ceases to exist when the school for which it is established is discontinued or amalgamated with another school.

9 Meetings of a Parent Council

(1) Except in so far as the headteacher of, and the Parent Council established for, a school otherwise agree, the headteacher has both the duty and the right either–

(a) to attend, or
(b) if the headteacher so elects, to be represented at,
any meeting of that council.
(2) Subject to subsection (3) , meetings of a Parent Council are to be open to the public.

(3) During consideration of any matter which a Parent Council is satisfied should be dealt with on a confidential basis, the only persons entitled to attend are–

(a) members of the council, and
(b) a person attending the meeting in accordance with subsection (1).

10 Financial powers of a Parent Council

(1) A Parent Council may–

(a) raise funds by any means other than by borrowing,
(b) receive gifts,
and may expend any sums so received at its discretion.
(2) A Parent Council is to keep proper accounts in relation to any sums received by it under subsection (1).

(3) A Parent Council is not to acquire any interest in heritable property, whether by inheritance, gift or otherwise.

(4) Where a Parent Council ceases to exist, any property belonging to it passes to the education authority; but (except where the council has ceased to exist by virtue of section 8(16) ) the authority is to use any such property for the benefit of the school.

(5) Subsection (4) is subject to section 16(5).

Duties , reports , appointments and complaints (PROSPECTIVE)


11 Duties of education authority and headteacher to a Parent Council etc

.

(1) An education authority are to give advice and information to a Parent Council established for a school in their area when the council reasonably requests it from them on any matter.

(2) An education authority are to take such steps as appear to them to be appropriate to ensure that the headteacher and staff of each school in their area–

(a) are available to give advice and information to a Parent Council established for the school on what is being done by those managing the school to promote parental involvement in education there, and
(b) in giving such advice and information act in a manner consistent with the authority's duties under this Act.
(3) In addition to giving advice and information in terms of subsection (2) (a) , the headteacher of a school must, if requested to do so by a Parent Council established for that school, give advice to the council on any matter falling within the headteacher's area of responsibility.

(4) An education authority are, in respect of each financial year, to determine for a Parent Council established for a school in their area, an allocation of such money within the authority's budget as appears to the authority, after consultation with the council, reasonably to be required by the council for meeting–

(a) its administrative expenses (including, without prejudice to that generality, any expenses incurred by virtue of section 8(10) (b) ) ,
(b) the expenses of training its members, and
(c) its other outgoings in carrying out the functions assigned it by or by virtue of this Act.
(5) An education authority may provide a Parent Council established for a school in their area with services or accommodation.

(6) An education authority are to inform a Parent Council established for a school in their area about the school's arrangements for consultation between parents and teachers; and without prejudice to the generality of paragraph (b) of section 8(1) , the council may make representations under that paragraph, concerning those arrangements, to the authority or to the headteacher.

(7) Where (whether or not under that paragraph) –

(a) an education authority receive representations from a Parent Council established for a school in their area, the authority are to have regard to the representations (in so far as it is reasonable and practicable to do so) in carrying out their functions and are to reply to the council, or
(b) a school's headteacher receives representations from the Parent Council of the school, the headteacher is to have regard to the representations (in so far as it is reasonable and practicable to do so) in carrying out the duties of that post and is to reply to the council.