Parental involvement is key to student success

Partners Post, October 2015

Parent-teacher meetingWhen schools, families, and communities work together to support learning, students tend to earn higher grades, attend school more regularly, stay in school longer, and enroll in higher-level programs. Yes, your involvement in your students' learning is critical to their future success.

In the past, parent engagement was characterized by volunteers, mostly mothers, assisting in the classroom, chaperoning students, and fundraising. According to the Pennsylvania State Education Association's Solutions That Work, today that model has been replaced with a much more inclusive approach. School-family-community partnerships now include parents, stepparents, grandparents, foster parents, other relatives, and caregivers, as well as business leaders and community groups, participating in goal-oriented activities at each grade level linked to student achievement and school success.

While parent and family engagement continues to include parent and teacher interaction to monitor students' academic progress and parental involvement in school activities, research continues to show that the greatest benefits come from interaction between parents and students at home. In particular, discussions related to school experiences, the importance of school, and expectations for high school graduation and post-secondary education are positively associated with students' academic achievement.

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