Great Article…It has created some thoughts for me as we are involved in ensuring the family engagement also means “Father Engagement”. While schools struggle with understanding engagement, we often fall even shorter when it comes to engaging dad. One of the ways we have been able to increase father engagement is by understanding that there is a difference between engagement and involvement. Having a Daddy Daughter Dance, Dads and Donuts etc. is what we believe is engagement. It means we got their attention. Involvement is how do we get them connected to the process of education through joining the pta, serving as a volunteer, mentoring, being a hall monitor, school crossing guard, etc. We must do a better job and recognizing and addressing the barriers that fathers endure as a result of policies, practice and gender culture in schools. It is a must that both parents are engaged, irregardless of the marital and living situation.
Coffee Break: Kenya Bradshaw on How to Know When a School Is Doing Family Engagement Right
by Tanesha Peeples, Deputy Director of Outreach for Education Post
WHICH DISTRICTS ARE DOING FAMILY ENGAGEMENT CORRECTLY? WHAT ARE THEY DOING?
There are districts all across the country that I believe are modeling authentic community engagement. District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS), Brevard Public Schools in Florida, Lorain City Schools in Ohio, Tulsa Public Schools in Oklahoma and the Houston Independent School District in Texas, are just a few of the districts in the U.S. that are reimagining the role that families and communities can play as true partners to support all areas of district success.
All of these districts have a few things in common. First, each superintendent prioritized family and community engagement as absolutely essential to the core work of the district, and they set clear and measurable goals which they track continuously through the use of data.
Secondly, they engage families in almost all decisions facing schools and students. Nothing is deemed to small—from school lunch vendors, bus schedules and start times to strategic plans, academic initiatives and school-level improvement.