As a Parent Engagement Advocate and in my contact with Parents, I have found some schools are more prepared than others when it comes to scheduling parent engagement activities and communicating with parents. First we need to consider the requirements of Title I, Section 1118 – Parent Involvement. Each school that receives Title I funds is REQUIRED to:
1. Offer a flexible number of meetings, such as meetings in the morning or evening, and may provide, with funds provided under this part, transportation, child care, or home visits, as such services relate to parental involvement;
2. Involve parents, in an organized, ongoing, and timely way, in the planning, review, and improvement of programs for parental involvement.
3. Provide parents timely information about programs.
4. Opportunities for regular meetings to formulate suggestions and to participate, as appropriate, in decisions relating to the education of their children
5. Evaluate the effectiveness of parental involvement
In order for schools to fulfill these requirements and keep a stronger connection with parents, I created the Parent Engagement Tracker©. The Parent Engagement Tracker© enables school districts to use high-quality, web-based software to track and measure parent engagement. It also provides parents online access to calendars of parent engagement activities for each of their children’s schools. Parents can record educational involvement at home using the mobile application.
What Are The Benefits?
- Parental engagement expands
- Student attendance increases
- Behavior improves
- Academic achievement rises
- Measurement and reporting requirements under Federal Title 1 funding are met
Currently schools use either a paper-based system or spreadsheets to track parent engagement. This is an inefficient process and requires a lot of time to manage. Not to mention losing information. The Parent Engagement Tracker provides an easy way to record and report on parent engagement. Not only is this the missing link but schools can easily determine where they need to improve their parental engagement. Parents benefit by an online system to see how they can be involved, support their children’s education and lead them to success with access to school calendars and reports showing their involvement.