Home School Community Liaison (HSCL) is a major, mainstream, preventative strategy targeted at pupils at risk of not reaching their potential in the educational system because of background characteristics which tend to affect adversely pupil attainment and school retention. It focuses directly on the salient adults in children’s educational lives in order that they may be better able to support the children’s attendance, participation and retention in the education system.
Under DEIS (Delivering Equality of Opportunity in Schools), Home School Community Liaison is available to all DEIS Urban Band 1, Band 2 and Post Primary schools. A list of the DEIS schools can be downloaded here.
Home School Community Liaison Coordinator posts are provided on a full time or shared basis between schools and serving teachers are deployed to undertake full-time home school community liaison duties. The role of the HSCL Coordinator requires the flexibility to be available to families and students, implementing literacy/numeracy initiatives, for home visitation, Continuous Professional Development and undertaking school staff development. In order for teachers in HSCL posts to keep up to date with curricular developments while serving in a non-teaching role, all HSCL Coordinators continue to attend in-career development and training to keep them up to date with curricular developments.
To facilitate local HSCL Coordinators working with the families of disadvantaged children, posts are shared across the two sectors – primary and post primary level.
A teacher is assigned to the post of HSCL Coordinator for a maximum period of five (5) years. It is a requirement that the HSCL Coordinator post be rotated among eligible staff in the school(s) every 5 years. Having served the maximum period of 5 years allowed in the post, the existing HSCL Coordinator may not re-apply immediately for the post. They must vacate the position for a minimum of 4 years before he/she is eligible to re-apply for the HSCL post.
Responsibility for the Home School Community Liaison Scheme now rests with the Educational Welfare Services (EWS) section of TUSLA
Circular 16/2019: Home School Community Liaison Scheme: Assignment of Home School Community Liaison Coordinators within DEIS schools (February 2019)
Information booklet for DEIS schools participating in the HSCL Scheme – May 2014
The Home School Community Liaison Scheme in Ireland: From Vision to Best Practice
DES – Home School Community Liaison Scheme