School Administrator's Clip File • July 29, 2020
Support families to improve student engagement
Sometimes family problems get in the way of students’ academic engagement. Make sure teachers, counselors and the rest of your staff have access to a list of community agencies and resources to share with parents. Include contact information for:
- Family services. These include children’s services, domestic violence and abuse help, food and other assistance, foster care, homeless shelters and social services.
- Career support services. These agencies may provide assistance in finding a job or childcare.
- Health services. This includes emergency medical services, nutrition and support groups.
- Court services. Families might not know where the court is or how the system works.
- Mental health and substance abuse services. These usually include treatment and counseling facilities.
- Transportation services. Families might be unaware of bus, train or other transportation options in your community.
Strengthen home-school relationships
The beginning of the school year is an opportunity for a fresh start with parents. These tips can help you establish and maintain successful home-school relationships:
- Make your first contact with parents a positive one.
- Be straightforward when communicating with parents and avoid educational jargon.
- Provide parents with simple information about how to support learning.
- Ask parents to share their concerns and ideas—and address them in a timely manner.
- Provide accommodations for language and cultural differences.
Did you know?
Research published in the School Psychology Quarterly shows that teacher ratings of parental involvement early in a student’s academic career can accurately predict the student’s academic and social success. It also shows that teacher training programs can help improve the quantity and quality of teacher-parent interactions.