In our school there are a variety of groups you can join as a parent:
- The Parents Association (PA)
- The Parent Teacher Association (PTA)
- The Parent Connectors
- The Medezeggenschapsraad (MR) or participation council
There is a Parent Teacher Association (PTA) in Primary, and Parents Association (PA) for Secondary. We also have the Parent Connectors, who work across both schools, making newcomers to the school feel welcome. All three of these groups are vital to school life and building a sense of school community. It’s a great way to meet people to find your feet in a school.
The Parents Association (PA)
All parents or guardians of ISH secondary students are members of the PA. The PA Board is a group of a few parent volunteers who strive to reinforce the link between the parents/guardians and the school through various means including regular coffee mornings and community events, Year Representatives, interaction with the parent members of the MR (Participation Council), meetings with PA's of other Dutch international Schools IPSSG and the Bookstore.
The PA Board works hard to support the parents/guardians and the school to ensure a sound personal and academic school life for our students. Some of the activities are to provide occasional treats to students as well as a lunch and goodies for the teachers and staff. We organize the Silverbacks Booster club concession stand and run various activities for parents.
We are always looking for new volunteers to help us!
The Year Representatives play a key role in connecting the views of the parent body for their year group with school leaders so that we are able to keep each other well informed and to collaborate on the key issues affecting our community. As facilitators of communication between the parent community and the school, the reps will seek parents input on several occasions during the year in preparation for their Year Reps Meeting with the Senior Leadership Team, where they discuss views/issues parents would like to share with the school.
Parents are always welcomed to share their concerns, unprompted, with their reps at any other time throughout the year.
The Parent Teacher Association (PTA)
In Primary, each class has a Class Parent Rep who provides an important communication link between the class teacher and parents of students in that class.
The Parent Connectors
The parents connectors welcome families in both Primary and Secondary school. They are our ambassadors, helping new families feel at home in The Netherlands. They show them how the school works, and a little bit about setting up your life in The Hague. Wherever possible, families are assigned to a person that speaks their home language, so that parents feel more comfortable, especially at the beginning when so much is already foreign.
In Dutch this is called Medezeggenschapsraad (MR).
By law, every school in the Netherlands has a medezeggenschapsraad (MR). This is a participation council, where elected representative sof teachers, students and parents are consulted by the school management over matters concerning the management of the school. In accordance with the law we have a separate MR for Primary and Secondary.
The MR has three rights:
● The right for consultation
● The right of initiative
● The rights of information
With these rights come two powers: the power of advice and the power of approval. The goal is to have an open dialogue between the school and these representatives. There should be a good flow of information coming from the school for consultation. On issues, there is a strict definition on which allow the power of advice and which the
power of approval. This is all laid down in the law about MR (Wet medezeggenschap op scholen)
So, join the MR if you can! Meetings are generally after school.