Ann-Marie Snell

The Meaning of Family

When you hear the word “FAMILY,” what does it mean to you?

Who makes up your family? What kinds of things do you do together?

What role do you play in your family?

Every family is different and each person will define family in his or her own way. For some, family may represent those individuals living in the same home (under one roof). For others, family may be all of the important adults who help care for a child or young person, such as grandparents, aunts, uncles, teachers, neighbours, step-parents or best friends. Family, however we perceive it, is normally the one consistent in life and it is without a doubt, the most important source of information about a child or young person.

Wyvern Academy have always believed families are central to children’s development; we see families as partners, active participants, and decision makers in both their children’s education, social development and emotional wellbeing. That is why, when working with parents and carers, we feel working with a ‘family centred approach’ to be the most successful way to support pupils here at Wyvern.     Working with families, focusing on a strengths based approach, families can continue to build, nurture & maintain good educational outcomes for their children, as well as build strong & resilient families for the future.

At the heart of family-centred practice is the belief that families are the most important decision makers in a child’s life. Therefore professionals must respect, support, and enhance the strengths and unique characteristics of each family’ (Sandall, Hemmeter, Smith, & McLean, 2005).

The four cornerstones which underpin our family support are:

  • We learn from families about their strengths, needs, and circumstances to better support our pupils
  • We connect families with the right resources, whatever these might be
  • We support ‘whole families’ to build on their strengths and build future resilience.
  • Families are central to development and learning and we therefore recognise parents/carers and wider family as their child’s first teachers.

For further information and training opportunities please click here.