“Parental Involvement Standards”

A newspaper in Tennessee has just published an article about “Parental Involvement Standards” that the state has developed.

They are:

Standard 1: Welcoming all families into the school community- Families are active participants in the life of the school, and feel welcomed, valued, and connected to each other, to school staff, and to what students are learning and doing in class and school.

Standard 2: Communicating effectively—Families and school staff engage in regular, meaningful communication about student learning.

Standard 3: Supporting student success—Families and school staff continuously work together to support students’ learning and healthy development both at home and at school, and have regular opportunities to strengthen their knowledge and skills to do so effectively.

Standard 4: Speaking up for every child—Families are informed and enabled to be advocates for their own and other children, to ensure that students are treated fairly and have access to learning opportunities that will support their success.

Standard 5: Sharing power—Families and school staff are equal partners with equal representation in decisions that affect students and families and together inform, influence, and create policies, practices, and programs.

Standard 6: Collaborating with community—Families and school staff work together with community members to connect students, families, and staff to expanded learning opportunities, community services, and civic participation.

I’m personally skeptical about the effect any kind of state standards actually have “on the ground” in schools and in the classroom, but these do sound good. The only way they can hurt, though, is if it leaves people who publish them feeling like they’ve actually done something useful (like people who call into talk radio), and don’t feel like they have to actually help provide resources to schools to implement them and help teachers and administrators feel like it’s in their self-interest to do so.

One thought on ““Parental Involvement Standards”

  1. I completely agree with your skepticism. I do not think that there is much more that I can do in my classroom to engage parents. I have written, I have called, I send home a variety of things to communicate to them about how their child is doing and I explicitly ask for help. Most parents read none of the information that is presented to them. Of the 23 conferences that I scheduled out 18 parents showed up, which compared to other years is a success. What I have found is the parents who are going to help – help and the other ones don’t. The ones who care will do whatever they can to be involved as much as they possibly can. I have actually seen an interesting trend recently with parents who seem to be doing everything they can to disprove me when I say that their child has no major problems in my class. I have also in the last two weeks filled out three sets of social security disability paperwork. hmmm . . .

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