The Power of Parent Involvement
The Power of Parent Involvement
The research on student achievement is very clear. The classroom teacher is the most powerful influence on student achievement, and the second most powerful influence on student achievement is the building principal. Each day our teachers and principals work hard to ensure all students are prepared for life after high school. This hard work begins the minute your child enters the school system and does not end until your child walks across the stage at graduation.
As important as the teacher’s and principal’s roles are in shaping the lives of students, there is no one person more powerful in supporting a child’s academic success than that of the parent. The parent’s involvement in the overall educational experience of their child is critical, and the partnership between our parents and the schools must be built on a foundation of a trust. Parents trust that the schools are equipping their children with skills to be successful in life. Schools need parents to be a partner in their child’s learning experience to support the importance of obtaining a quality education.
There is a direct benefit associated with the parent’s active involvement in their child’s education. Such benefits include a child earning higher grades and test scores, a child attending school regularly, a child having better social skills, a child graduating from high school, and a child attending a post-secondary institution. Again, the research is very clear. The chances of experiencing academic success and going on to college significantly increase when a parent is involved in their child’s education.
“How can I help?” is often a question asked by parents. Here are a few ways that a parent can support their child’s education. Please call your child’s classroom teacher or your school’s guidance counselor for additional ideas on ways that you can support your child’s education.
1) Parents can make sure their child attends school on a regular basis.
2) Parents should attend parent-teacher conferences or call the classroom teacher to request a meeting for the purpose of discussing their child’s education. We wish to create a positive partnership with parents so they are comfortable asking questions or challenging us to stretch their child’s learning. The involvement by parents of middle or high school students is as critical as the involvement by parents of our elementary students.
3) Parents should make the following requests of teachers or principals. Ask the teacher to:
a) share and describe the state or national academic standards we expect your child to know and be able to do. Please ask about the standards and why specific standards are important for your child. We should be able to describe the knowledge and skills we expect each and every student to know!
b) share and describe the evidence that confirms your child has mastered those state and national standards. We should be able to show examples of your student’s work ranging from products created by the student to application of skills in real-life situations.
4) Parents of elementary students can read to their child or listen while their child reads to them.
5) Parents of secondary students can ask about homework and check to ensure their child completes the homework.
6) Parents should frequently visit with their children about the importance of earning a high school diploma.
7) Parents should visit with their children about attending a post-secondary institution. Why is this important? The research is very clear. Over 90% of the jobs available today and in the future will require additional skills, and the statistics show that college graduates tend to earn more and have better paid jobs then students who have just earned a high school diploma. Additional education can take place in technical colleges and in 2-year or 4-year institutions. Consider you and your child visiting with the high school guidance office to determine the best path to college.
Emphasizing the importance of earning a high school diploma, asking questions about a child’s performance at school, or ensuring a student attends school on a regular basis all increase the likelihood that a student will be successful in school. Please go to our district website at www.ssccardinals.org for more information or please call me at 402-494-2425 if you would like to visit more about our schools.