“Calif board OKs rules giving parents school power”

Calif board OKs rules giving parents school power is the headline of an ABC News article describing the California State Board of Education’s approval of regulations to govern use of the parent trigger law.

As I’ve written many times before, it’s a bad law that should have never been passed. Given that it is the law, however, it’s important that it have much clearer regulations than it had under the temporary rules.

And, at this point, it doesn’t matter a great deal since it’s safe to say the parent trigger law appears to be disappearing on its own….

One thought on ““Calif board OKs rules giving parents school power”

  1. Unfortunately, when parents and teachers (and other school staff) have become adversaries rather than collaborators, rebels are created–and movements like this will prevail. Due to persistent achievement gaps, constant leadership changes, lack of morale, and a sense of despair pervades the system, and years go by without improved outcomes for children, people organize themselves and fight the status quo. Why wouldn’t they?

    When schools fail to engage families (especially low-income families) in positive ways by consistently recognizing family strengths and abilities to assist their children as more powerful learners, parents will rise up and say, “enough”. This happened in the past with students enrolled in Special Education and that is why we have so many regulations in place “to force schools to do the right thing” for special education kids.

    However, “forcing or mandating people to change” by passing laws, doesn’t usually get us the results we really want, and schools that are forced to change without understanding what is in it for them, will reluctantly fulfill the “letter of the law” but not embrace the true “spirit of the law”–which is to work respectfully together on behalf of student academic success and healthy development.

    This is why teachers and administrators deserve and need to know how to create and sustain positive relationships with families as an effective tool for school reform. It is essential. It is long overdue. The research is there; the practices are there; we have the tools in information to do it; but it is still not considered to be a critical part of teaching and learning. This needs to change. Our schools of education need to incorporate this into their curriculum and certification programs for teachers and administrators ASAP.

    We will continue to founder in education unless we learn how to build trusting relationships with families and community and leverage those relationships to support students. After all, “it is almost impossible to create an island of academic excellence in a sea of community indifference.” When will we get it? The more diverse our student body becomes the more proficient and proactive we need to become in building powerful partnerships.

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