"Groupcall

Parental engagement, digital home-school links and pupil achievement

Groupcall was founded by Sir Bob Geldof who had the vision to see that the latest communication technologies would enhance learning for all, but particularly the disadvantaged. At the UNICEF Education for All Campaign launch in 2008, Sir Bob quoted Epictetus, “Only the educated are free”.

Sir Bob went on to point out that:

“From a truancy point of view, as a country we really need high levels of education or we are going to fall behind. If kids aren’t in school, what’s going to happen? Lying out there right now is some kid who could, conceivably, be a genius, but we won’t know because he’s either in bed, in a bowling alley, drinking or taking some drug or another. This system helps keeps kids in school. Fact.”

MirandaNet Fellows were invited to research the impact of the Groupcall suite of products that included tools for mobile registration, for communication between home and school and to alert teachers and parents to bullying. First the Fellows explored the existing research about how digital communications help to bridge the gap between home and school. The most significant impact on learning achievement was good relationships between teachers, parents and pupils. In particular, the confidence of parents in the school increased when they were receiving regular communications on their smartphones. The impact of the Groupcall products depended on teachers working within the home context. Four categories were established as relevant:

  • the socio-economic status of the family;
  • the parents’ awareness about the impact of the media;
  • the style of parenting that is prevalent;
  • the availability of home–school digital links.

Read the Research Report.
(Students in education and social studies doing graduate and post graduate studies will find valuable references and abstracts in this report.)

Professor Preston in conversation with Bob Geldof at BETT 2013