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Website to give tips for parents

A multilingual website containing information for parents is to be launched by the Government.

The site is intended to give parents guidance about a range of school-related topics, such as homework, uniforms, national curriculum requirements and the literacy and numeracy strategies.

A Department for Education and Employment spokesperson said users should be able to obtain information relevant to their child by simply entering his or her age.

David Blunkett, the education secretary, announced the website last month when the proposed changes to the national curriculum were released. Information will also be available in printed form.

Meanwhile, a pilot project aimed at cutting the amount of printed material sent by the DFEE to schools and local education authorities is under way.

The Electronic Communications with Schools, or EASEA, project will test whether paper-based administrative communication with schools and LEAs can be eliminated.

Twenty schools in Gloucestershire and South Gloucestershire are at the core of the trial, but schools with Internet access in England and Wales can also participate and over 700 have signed up. These schools continue to receive hard copies of documents as well as gaining Web access.

Users receive a notifying email each month when a new batch of documents is put on the website. They can be viewed online or downloaded. The documents are stored in an in-tray, categorised, with indications about who should take action and deadlines - a feature many users say is very helpful.

The trial ends in July.

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