Home School Community Liaison

The key to Access, Inclusion & Supporting DEIS Action Plans.

Format: On-line
Course duration: 20 hours
ENROL €89.00

About the Course

Calling all Home School Community Liaison coordinators, budding HSCLs, Principals, and anyone interested in learning more about the role and its accountabilities. We are ready to welcome the community of educators from wherever you hail.

This is the very FIRST summer in-service course specifically designed to bring the HSCLs across the country together into a common forum where they can learn together, share ideas and chat about their own practices, concerns, successes and challenges.

It’s a comprehensive course, tailor-made to equip Home School Community Liaison Teachers like you with the tools, strategies, and expertise needed to excel in your vital role.

We appreciate the unique challenges and opportunities faced by Home School Community Liaison Teachers. We delve into topics relevant to your daily responsibilities.

Let’s lean into the power of togetherness this summer: 

  • Together, let’s gain insights from sharing in open discussion on the role of HSCLs within the module forums, distilling and harnessing our combined knowledge to drive positive change
  • Together, let’s engage in discussion, review, share, and elevate our roles to make an even greater impact in our communities
  • Together, let’s acquire the tools, strategies, and expertise needed to excel
  • Together, let’s continue to make a difference in the lives of families everywhere!

We look forward to bringing you all together this summer. We will connect with fellow Home School Community Liaison Teachers from around the country to share experiences, exchange ideas, and build a support network that lasts long after the course ends.

NOTE: This course's online format enables you to study at a time and place that best suits your needs. 

You can access your course from July 1st to August 16th 2024.

A dynamic learning experience awaits you in this highly interactive web-based course. You can interact with your fellow course participants through the in-course chat forums and communication tools provided by the CPD College learning system. 

Our friendly and knowledgeable tutors actively support each course, providing expert interaction, guidance, and feedback for all participants on chat questions and assignments that require critical reflection, self-analysis, and reasoned responses. 

On successful completion of your course, you can download and print off your CPD record and certificate of completion.

We look forward to welcoming you to your course.

Learning Outcomes

In this course, we aim to:
  • Appraise the historical background of HSCL
  • Support DEIS planning process and Action Plans
  • Implement HSCL vision & values, principles and practices 
  • Deliver for the role and accountabilities of the HSCL Coordinator
  • Support implementation of the integrated services intervention practice model
  • Comply with TESS planning and reporting requirements
  • Empower the HSCL to be the best he/she can be within the full parameters of the role
  • Enable HSCL teachers to meet their own welfare, wellbeing and CPD needs as they support others


01 - The role of the HSCL teacher: We begin by exploring the role of the HSCL teacher, from developing a vision to implementing best practices to deliver on the accountabilities of the role; as set out in Circular 0016/2019, in Tusla guidance and in so far as it supports the broader DEIS Plan 2017, aligning with the vision and achievement of the set targets therein.

The following aspects will be developed: typical day/setting up communication lines, processes and building & nurturing in-school relationships/promoting HSCL roles & functions/linking into school teams such as CIT, Care Team, DEIS Planning Team/Strategies for connecting with parents/fulfilling planning and reporting requirements/tech advice etc.

02 - Building partnerships:  We begin by examining the theory and practice of partnership, the central tenet of HSCL's approach to developing the potential of parents, teachers, and the community.  We look at the preparations that underpin visits to homes, which is core to HSCL, and the purposes for and the processes that guide this, all informed by the TESS guidelines.

We examine the aims and work of the ‘care team’ and make recommendations. We also identify and explore effective initiatives and activities designed to support improvements in literacy across levels, from preschool to the end of primary schooling.

03 - HSCL in practice:  From auditing all the services and key individuals locally to exploring the people, partnerships & agencies, within the role and work of the ‘local committee’, we focus on identifying and addressing issues & challenges in the community that impinge on children’s learning and life in the community. We suggest the preparation steps, the processes to identify issues, a collaborative approach to policy formation to underpin and drive effective change and explore the hoped-for outcomes from the work of an in-place local committee - all supporting and feeding into the DEIS 2017 vision and School Action Plan.

We detail the extensive range of courses that a HSCL can attend or arrange for others to attend. We examine how the HSCL can help communicate the key messages and approaches of the NPMC to all school stakeholders and assist with activities and implementation.  

We conclude by looking at the many ways that the effective use of technology can support the inclusive and successful learning journey of all students, both at school and at home.

04 - Making a success of the role: We spotlight and discuss the key role of the parents’ room, as an easy, warm and welcoming forum for supporting parents in realising their role as the primary educators of their children. We share great practices, initiative ideas, and top tips while itemising a variety of course ideas for HSCL coordinators to consider organising for the benefit of parents throughout the school year. 

In the HSCL room and in courses, there is parent-to-parent interaction, which provides great opportunities for building relationships, problem-sharing, problem-solving, informal parenting, and parent-to-parent support in the education context. Besides parents, the HSCL needs to manage communication, relationships, and interactions across the school's spectrum, and we discuss issues and suggest practices regarding the same. 

Finally, we examine the findings of the 2018 survey of Home-School-Community Liaison coordinators and what messages it suggests for current practice. We explore effective practices and forums that help to connect pupils and parents to the decision-making, planning processes and organised activities of the schools.

05 - Liaison and collaboration: We explore the key principle of the HSCL scheme and its remit to liaise and collaborate with the statutory and voluntary agencies in the community to promote a cohesive provision of service to pupils and their families, e.g., Tusla, NALA, CAMHS, NEPS, HSE, local libraries, St. Vincent de Paul, etc. 

We detail the HSCL coordinator’s work in school transfer programmes to support marginalised parents and their children and to ensure a smooth and successful transfer for all. Not only that, but in 2024, there will be more international parents than ever that need varied support, and we will discuss the potential responses that can be initiated by HSCL. In supporting others, the HSCL needs to look after his/her own wellbeing and professional development needs, we discuss and provide ideas on same.