Father Friendly Schools

Massageclose.jpgWant to make your school more father-inclusive? Help is at hand with these great resources.

A great dad can make all the difference to children’s well-being, confidence and educational attainment. Research overwhelmingly shows that children, families and society as a whole benefits from the positive involvement of fathers or “The Dad Effect”. Yet despite ample research on the positive impact of fathers’ involvement in education on children’s development, dads in Scotland are significantly less likely than mums to form positive partnerships with their school. The resources on this page will explain why dads matter, some to the barriers to dads’ involvement and provide practical guidance to father inclusive practice.

Why Fathers' Involvement in Schools Matters, 2020

The following 2020 report is a follow up to a parental engagement project started in 2016 when one dad asked his child’s Head Teacher how the school had created such a father-inclusive culture. To reduce gender inequality, Fathers Network Scotland collaborated with the University of Edinburgh to gather knowledge and father-inclusive practices from staff, dads workers, parents and children from an infant school in East Lothian. Their practices formed the basis of the ‘How Father-Friendly Is Your School?’ guide which could be shared with other schools and communities to support family learning.

Data was gathered from two of the schools who piloted the ‘How Father-Friendly Is Your School?’ guide. You can read the summary of our findings and the full report here:

  • Why Fathers' Involvement in Primary Schools Matters, a Summary, January 2020
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  • Why Fathers' Involvement in Primary Schools Matters, Recent Trends in Scotland, January 2020
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In light of our findings, we have updated our guide for parents and teachers, who wish to improve dad-inclusivity in their schools. You will find the updated version of the guide here:

  • How Father Friendly Is Our School? – A Practical Guide to Father Inclusive Practice, Third Edition February 2020
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Fact Sheets

Earlier Research

  • How Dad Friendly is our School? – Key Findings 2016
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  • How Dad Friendly is our School? – Full Report 2016
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