The School Act gives parents the right, through Parent Advisory Councils (PAC), to assume an advisory role in every school. PAC is the officially recognized collective voice of parents of their school. A PAC, through its elected officers, may advise the school board, the principal and staff of the school respecting any matter relating to the school other than matters assigned to the School Planning Council (SPC).
PACs are forums within each school community to discuss matters affecting your school and the education of your children. Parents’ voices are a tremendous value to their school. They offer a wealth of ideas and support in the challenges that face all public schools. PACs strive to represent the diversity within their communities and contribute to the benefit of all students by:
- providing opportunities to educate and inform parents about the school;
- involving parents in volunteer activities; and
- openly discussing parents’ concerns and aspirations for their schools.
A PAC is NOT a forum to discuss individual students/staff problems or conflicts.
A PAC is an autonomous body that must abide by its Constitution and Bylaws and the School Act. Through their elected executives from parents in the school, PACs communicate with their parent community gathering and discussing issues of importance regarding their school in order to adequately advise those that influence their school. In addition to PAC meetings, communication may also be done through newsletters, telephone, email and websites so that all parents have the opportunity for input. PACs, with strong participation from parents, have an important influence on life at the school and the feelings the community has toward the school and education. There is strong evidence that increased parent involvement in the school results in students having increased achievement, accomplishment, satisfaction and bonding, all of which result in decreased dropout rates and students becoming better citizens.
Whom Does the PAC Advise?
- The board, the principal and the staff of the school or the Provincial school respecting any matter relating to the school or the Provincial school, other than matters assigned to the School Planning Council (SPC).
- The SPC, at their request, by assisting them to carry out its functions.
- Their District Parents’ Advisory Council (DPAC), British Columbia Confederation of Parent Advisory Councils (BCCPAC), the Ministry of Education and any other organization, as they deem necessary.
All parents and guardians of students registered in the school are able to participate as a member of the PAC. Parents are encouraged and invited to bring forth issues, suggestions, or concerns relating to the meeting and enhancement of the needs of their school community. These issues can be brought forth by:
- contacting a PAC executive member;
- sending a letter to the school addressed to a member of the PAC; or
- attending a PAC meeting.