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21 May 2012 | PR 12/94

Report shows seal of approval for parenting classes in low income areas

Parenting class

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Low income parents would welcome the provision of parenting classes according to a Loughborough University report released today.

An independent study, which examined parental attitudes to parenting classes in higher, middle and low-income areas, revealed 82% of parents in low-income primary schools believed classes should be made available through their child’s school.

55% of low-income parents interviewed agreed they would attend parenting classes if offered, and many felt such classes would also benefit their local community by reducing antisocial behaviour.

However, concerns were raised about the possible stigma attached to the classes and confidence issues that might deter people from attending.

Professor Sarah Holloway and Dr Helena Pimlott-Wilson, who led the study, believe their findings show there is an unmet demand for parenting education for parents of primary school children.

Prof Holloway explains:

“We now know parents, particularly those in lower socio-economic groups, want to see the provision of parenting education through trusted local primary schools. But to ensure their success, these classes need to be provided on a universal rather than targeted basis to remove the stigma attached to attending them.”

The study, which was funded through the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the British Academy (BA), was designed to chart parents’ attitudes to the changing role of primary schools and to better understand the services parents require.

Researchers in the Department of Geography’s Centre for Research in Identity, Governance and Society surveyed over 700 parents from higher, middle and low income schools and conducted a further 45 follow-up interviews.

Click here to view the full report.


For all media enquiries contact:

Amanda Overend
PR Officer
Loughborough University
T: 01509 223491
E: A.J.Overend@lboro.ac.uk 

Notes for editors:

Loughborough is one of the country’s leading universities, with an international reputation for research that matters, excellence in teaching, strong links with industry, and unrivalled achievement in sport and its underpinning academic disciplines.

It was awarded the coveted Sunday Times University of the Year 2008-09 title, and is consistently ranked in the top twenty of UK universities in national newspaper league tables. In the 2011 National Student Survey, Loughborough was voted one of the top universities in the UK, and has topped the Times Higher Education league for the UK’s Best Student Experience every year since the poll's inception in 2006. In recognition of its contribution to the sector, the University has been awarded six Queen's Anniversary Prizes.

Loughborough is also the UK’s premier university for sport. It has perhaps the best integrated sports development environment in the world and is home to some of the country’s leading coaches, sports scientists and support staff. It also has the country’s largest concentration of world-class training facilities across a wide range of sports.

It is a member of the 1994 Group of 19 leading research-intensive universities. The Group was established in 1994 to promote excellence in university research and teaching. Each member undertakes diverse and high-quality research, while ensuring excellent levels of teaching and student experience.

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