Reflect on Your Approach to Family Involvement
Successful family involvement programs are built on a foundation of mutual respect, understanding and trust. Here are questions to consider as you review your approach to family involvement programs:
- How involved and supportive are the families of the students in my school today?
- In what areas are families involved—social activities, classroom support, leadership committees, etc.?
- In what areas would I like to increase parent involvement?
- What are the barriers in my school and community that interfere with school/family interaction? What can I do to reduce or eliminate them?
- Do I generalize about certain groups—single parents, parents whose language skills are poor, parents who are on welfare, etc.?
The Art of Learning
Arts education helps students develop the creativity and skills they need to be successful in school. Here are four ways to facilitate the arts in your school:
- Encourage teachers to integrate art into daily lessons.
- Involve the local arts community. Local artists can provide workshops, consultations, teaching demonstrations and assistance in developing curriculum materials.
- Show your appreciation of the arts. Hang student art in school hallways. Incorporate student performances in your school events.
- Engage parents’ help. They can help raise funds for your programs, apply for grants and provide volunteer support at events.
Connect with Your Parent Organization
Parent groups can be a wonderful source of support for schools. To maintain a positive relationship:
- Meet regularly with the parent group president and other board members. Together, review goals and resolve conflicts.
- Attend meetings and parent group events as often as possible.
- Encourage parent groups to work independently. Allowing parent group leaders to do their jobs frees you up to do yours!
- Show appreciation. Thank group members for their efforts.
Face Bullying Head On
Bullying is a problem facing educators, parents and communities around the world. What can schools do to protect themselves? The first step is to know the laws in your area. While each state law is different, most require or encourage school officials to do these things:
- Develop a policy to prohibit bullying.
- Implement a bullying prevention program.
- Require training for school staff on bullying and bullying prevention.
- Require individuals to report bullying incidents to authorities.
- Impose disciplinary action for students who bully.
Vision is Linked to Student Achievement
Students’ vision is essential to their success in school. And studies show that vision problems can affect their ability to learn. Here are things schools can do to help:
- Conduct vision screening for students each year in every grade. If your school doesn’t have a vision screening program, consider starting one.
- Share information with parents and teachers about the early signs of vision problems in children. These include...
- Frequent eye rubbing or blinking.
- Short attention span.
- Frequent headaches.
- Covering one eye or tilting the head to one side.
- Holding reading materials close to the face.
- Encourage parents to have their children’s vision checked every year by their pediatrician.