Why Should Parents Be Involved In Their Child's Education?

What is Parent Engagement?

Parent engagement is all of the activities parents do to help their children succeed in school and life. Everything from making sure your child is prepared to go to school, to attending parent meetings or school events, and even showing your child you value their education, is considered parent engagement.
Parent engagement empowers parents to become partners in their child’s education. When parents are involved in their child’s schooling, they are more informed decision makers, better goal setters, and stronger voices for their child’s education and overall well-being.

Why Should Parents be Engaged?

Involvement in your child’s school is important to his or her academic and social success. Students with involved parents or guardians are more likely to:

Taking the time to be involved in your child’s education shows your student you care about his or her academic success and that education is important to your family. Getting involved also gives you the opportunity to make sure your child is receiving the quality education he or she deserves.

How Do Parents Engage?

There are a variety of ways you can partner with your child’s school and get involved in your child’s education, both at school and at home.

AT SCHOOL:

  • Choose a school – Select the most appropriate school for your child to attend. Each child has unique interests and abilities, and schools have different ways of meeting those needs.
  • Build relationships – Strong relationships are an important factor in your child’s success. Strong relationships between parents and teachers, as well as between students and their teachers support student success.
    • Get to know at least one of your child’s teachers, counselors, coaches, or other school staff members.  You should feel comfortable enough with this individual that you can raise any issues or questions you may have with them.
    • Encourage your child to get to know his or her teacher. Students who are comfortable and feel supported by their teachers are more likely to succeed and in school.
  • Stay aware – It is important to stay aware of events and programs offered at your child’s school in addition to your child’s academic progress. Check school websites, calendars, and newsletters to stay informed or consider the following actions:
    • Join a parent group – Most schools have parent groups that influence what happens in a school and work together to advocate for the needs of their children. Consider joining one! Many of these groups keep parents involved and informed about what is going on at school.
    • Attend school events – There are often meetings and events offered at your child’s school. These can range from school plays, concerts, and sporting events to awards ceremonies, report card pick-up nights, and workshops for parents. When possible, make it a priority to attend these events. Attending school events can help you get to know the teachers and staff at your child’s school in addition to other parents. Your attendance also shows your child you think being at school is important, and you may leave events with new skills or valuable information.
    • Check parent portals – Many school districts allow parents to track their child’s grades online. Through online parent portals, parents can check their child’s grades, homework assignments, and even teacher contact information. Regularly checking your child’s academic progress can help you identify problems early.
    • Request a meeting – Set up meetings with your child’s teacher, counselor or school administrator if your child is having issues, or if you just want to check in. You can request a meeting at a time that works for you. You can also request the help of a translator if needed. To set up a meeting, call or email the appropriate person. Be aware that meetings with your child’s teacher will likely be before or after school.
AT HOME:
Being an involved parent is not limited to the school environment. There are many things you can do at home to support your child’s education including:
  • Making sure your child attends school each day
  • Making sure your child gets to school on time
  • Reading together at home
  • Setting aside a time and place for homework
  • Making sure your child completes his or her homework
  • Regularly asking your child about his or her classes
  • Encouraging active communication about your child’s school and teachers. If your child comes home with an issue, work with them and the teacher to understand and resolve the problem. Ask questions and problem-solve together.
  • Making every activity a learning opportunity. Going to the zoo, to the museum, and even to the grocery store –anything can be an opportunity to learn something new.
As your child’s first teacher, you will have a significant impact on your child’s education. It is important to show your child you value their education and you believe he or she can be successful in school.

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