How do you get more parents into your schools for parent involvement activities? This is a significant question in light of the NCLB regulations which specifically spell out the kind, type and amount of parent involvement that needs to be present in a school organization.
But how to recruit parents? They face barriers to becoming involved in the schools which can sometimes seem insurmountable. Consider using the following ideas as you make plans to recruit more parents to your schools.
- Understand the new parent involvement regulations. http://www.ed.gov/programs/titleiparta/parentinvguid.pdf
- Understand the definition parent involvement currently promoted by the Department of Education:
Parent Involvement means the participation of parents in regular, two-way, meaningful communications involving student academic learning.
Parents play an integral part in assisting their child’s learning;
Encourages parents to be involved in their child’s education at school;
And that parents are full partners in their child’s education
- Understand the barriers that parents face a becoming more involved in the schools, and with their children’s education. These barriers can be dealt with in a simple step-by-step process. Use like-minded individuals to help brainstorm the barriers… And the solution to those barriers
- Use what you know about barriers to customize solutions for those parents who are the hardest to involve. Often these parents of children in the schools are struggling with academics and behavioral issues
- Many hands make light work. Use a team approach of parents teachers and community members to play in strategies that will help involve parents in the education of their children
- Write it down. Collect all your ideas into a cohesive plan that will help you develop a useful recruitment strategy for parents and community members associated with your school.
ABOUT THE AUTHORS Dr. Chuck and Su Amodeo are the authors of “Reaching the Hardest to Involve Parents” teacher/parent training manual.