Schools can’t do it alone was the simple, but powerful, mantra that echoed throughout each focus group, interview, and meeting held to identify what is family engagement. Increasing number of administrators, teachers and other educators, and others across the country, are turning to their communities for the resources needed to build capacity, to run schools effectively, and to achieve positive student outcomes.
It’s important to note that ‘family engagement’ is a broad term that refers to varied activities, programs, strategies, systemic changers, that involves the school /district and educators, community organizations and it’s members, home/ parents & family as well as students. The goal of family engagement strategies is the same even if they differ slightly from district to district . It’s main purpose for the term is to achieve success for all students.
DROP OUT PREVENTION AND STUDENT ENGAGEMENT- BEST PRACTICE GUIDE
BUILDING, FAMILY, SCHOOL, COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT RESOURCES
School climate refers to the quality and character of school life. School climate is based on patterns of students’, parents’ and school personnel’s experience of school life and reflects norms, goals, values, interpersonal relationships, teaching and learning practices, and organizational structures.
A sustainable, positive school climate fosters youth development and learning necessary for a productive, contributing and satisfying life in a democratic society. The definition of school climate and a positive, sustained school climate were consensually developed by the National School Climate Council that CSEE co-leads with the Education Commission of the States. The climate in this sense includes:
A is for Asking. If you want people to participate, you must ask. The number one reason people cite for not volunteering: “Nobody asked.”
B is for Black Hole. People are afraid that if they volunteer, they’ll be sucked into a black hole of time commitment from which they can’t escape. Let them know up front that your group is not a black hole. Then, make sure you honor their time constraints.
C is for Communication. Use a variety of communication tools to make sure your message gets through. Flyers and e-mails are good for communicating a date and time. Use your newsletter and Web site to let people know about your accomplishments. Invite local media to activities involving kids.