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Parents, Families, and Caregivers as Equal Partners

Illustration of a split scene where on one side, a parent, a woman of African descent, is speaking on a phone in her home setting, and on the other side, a teacher, a man of Hispanic descent, is taking the call in a classroom. Between them, there's a transparent wave of communication, symbolizing the connection.

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Estimated Duration

Families are essential stakeholders in their children’s education. They have big hopes and dreams for their children and want them to succeed. Over 50 years of research shows that family engagement has a significant impact on student success and helping them thrive. However, educational systems can often be complicated and complex to navigate. 

Many approaches to family engagement attempt to teach families how to be involved in their child’s education, but fail to acknowledge the expertise that parents/caregivers bring to the home-school collaboration. Recognizing families as equal partners presents a myriad of opportunities for meaningful engagement.

The objective of this module is to provide parents with strategies and recommendations on how to navigate the educational system at both the local and the state level by helping parents/caregivers to think about the many roles that they can play both individually and collectively. Through reflection activities, participants will increase their ability to identify and honor family assets.

Throughout this module we breakdown complex educational jargon and share resources for those who would like to know more. We ground this module in community engagement as a key fundamental for relationship building.

This module is intended as training for LEA staff, particularly leaders, educators, and family and community engagement staff members, to better engage with family and caregivers of K12 students:  

  • To affirm parents and caregivers as equal partners in the scholastic community who hold both  individual and collective power 
  • To increase parent and caregiver understanding of local and state policy
  • To increase parent engagement in ways that align, and are reflective of, the immediate/local community values.

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