I’ve gotten a chance to read more carefully a report on parent involvement and middle school that I’ve previously posted about.
You can read the study here, though I suspect you won’t learn anything new from it.
It suggests that schools should focus on building relationships with parents through programs like home visits. Sounds good to me! Of course, it doesn’t suggest where schools might get the resources to do or expand those efforts, but that might very well not have been within the scope of the paper.
It also suggests that schools tell parents about the importance of:
speaking effectively with their children about the importance of education and helping them think about their futures. Indeed, middle school students, who are both seeking independence and at risk of disengaging from school, might be in particular need of academic socialization. Parents can help their children to think about what education means to them, to set their own goals for schooling, and to decide how best to reach them.
I agree that many parents and their kids could benefit from this kind of assistance. However, it can also easily come off as very paternalistic. A recommendation like this particular one requires an accompanying guide to schools and teachers about what to say, how to say it, when to say it, and how to frame it. Without it, this kind of strategy can blow up in a teacher’s and a school’s face….