Below are reader-submitted success stories, sharing ways parents and schools are working together to benefit kids and collaborating to build effective family, school, and community partnerships. Most stories have contact information or links to additional resources. Stories are listed in the order submitted, beginning with the most recent. However, stories may also be searched by your interest category, by the type of event or program, and by its geographic location.
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Linking School Activities to Student Learning Outcomes: As part of our family engagement team goals, several elementary schools decided to capitalize on having parents attend already successful activities and events by adding a curriculum component. Families who attended not only enjoyed a great fun experience and social event at their school, but also received valuable information about the curriculum and ways to support their students at home.
A ParentNet Success Story: Interview with Karen Firminger of the Bear Creek School: ParentNet at the Bear Creek School in Redmond, WA has expanded and evolved in some unexpected ways. Read an interview with Karen Firminger, the parent leader at the helm!
True Partnerships: Parent Partners Leading the Way to Success: The goal of this program in Ritchie County Schools, West Virginia, was to significantly increase parent engagement. Based on Dr. Joyce Epstein's framework for parent involvement, teams of principals, teachers, Title I staff, business leaders, and parents were formed at each school.
Natural Leaders Program Connects Non-English Speaking Parents to School: Odyssey Elementary School, with support from the Washington Alliance for Better Schools, offers a "Natural Leaders" program, which trains bilingual and multilingual parents to serve as liaisons to non-English speaking families. These families - who make up nearly 25 percent of our school's population - now attend more school events, participate as volunteers, initiate contact with staff members, and are more comfortable at school.
Imagine the Possibilities : Imagine Bainbridge was born out of a near crisis when a 15 year old almost died from alcohol poisoning. We held our first community conversation in the fall of 2002. Forty adults, youth and service providers sat in a circle of support. We laughed, we cried and each one of us responded to this question: What is your vision, your dream for our community in 5 years?
A Wild Ride: The Power of Story, Support, and Strategies While Raising Challenging Children: Eight years ago, seven isolated mothers, each raising a child experiencing behavioral and emotional difficulties, formed an amazing support group. Here expressed our difficult feelings, explored our disagreements, and cried and laughed through the dark humor that emerges. "I leave our meetings feeling so different from when I arrived," says one mom. "I know I can face the coming weeks with my son. These women are with me in spirit when times are tough."
Parent Forums Invite Parents to Explore Topics That Matter Most to Them : All parents of students at Olympic View Middle School are invited to attend quarterly Parent Forums, where they can learn more about what is happening at school, how it affects their child, and what they can do to help their student. Parents gain information not only from staff members and outside experts, but from other parents - who share their own ideas and solutions.