How Community Schools Can Transform Parent Involvement for the Better

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“Both common sense and research seem to conclude that parent involvement matters a lot for student success and even for improving schools in general. According to the U.S. Department of Education’s analysis of parent involvement and education success in 2017, “Good cooperation between schools, homes, and the communities can lead to academic achievement for students, as well as to reforms in education.”

Despite these findings, policy leaders and politicians have often given false impressions of what parent involvement should look like, or they’ve taken stances that pit parents’ interests against schools and teachers.

Fortunately, educators that are implementing a school improvement strategy, commonly called community schools, are clarifying how schools should go about inviting parents into a collaborative process that benefits not only student learning but also the functioning and effectiveness of schools. The community schools approach, while achieving different outcomes in different places, has at its core a commitment to address the holistic needs, rather than strictly the academic needs, of students and families and to make schools essential hubs of services and activities for their surrounding communities.

The hope among community school advocates is that as the approach catches on in more states and school districts, it may also address widespread misapprehensions of how parents and schools can work together.”

Read the full story here.

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