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The Resource Section is intended to help users delve more deeply into the forum topics. The resources represent a broad range of perspectives and include varied types of documents, including items developed by the forum panelists. The categories used in this section correspond to key topics from the forum:

  • Reframing Engagementredefining the concept of engagement through in-depth explanations, examples of best practice, and research-based suggestions
  • Infrastructuredemonstrating the value of federal, state, and local policy and systemic programmatic design in promoting effective engagement practices
  • Data Useillustrating the importance of data collection and analysis in promoting meaningful engagement practices that focus on student learning and foster relationships between families and schools
  • Targeted Supportdescribing a systemic approach to support student learning and whole school improvement that incorporates partnerships, collaborations, and shared responsibility among family members, educators, community members, and service agency staff

Displaying 26 resources from the category "Infrastructure." Click here to view all resources.

Academic Parent Teacher Teams (APTT)
The Creighton School District (AZ) uses a well-defined model—Academic Parent Teacher Teams—to ensure that educators and parents share responsibility for student academic success. The district created two online videos demonstrating its approach. The videos, which document two APTT meetings, provide real world examples of effective home-school partnerships that promote shared responsibility for student learning.
Citation: Creighton School District (Producer). (2010). Academic Parent Teacher Teams: Student Learning as a Shared Responsibility [Online Videos 1 & 2].
Resource Type: Web-based Video
ARIS Parent Link
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The New York City Department of Education provides information to parents on the academic progress of their children through an online data tool, ARIS Parent Link. Even though the data-display portions of the site are restricted to ensure student privacy, the Web site portal includes two resources that may be of use to anyone with an interest in creating a similar Web-based data portal for parents:
  1. Welcome video that invites parents into the Web site and encourages them to take advantage of the data portal
  2. User guide for parents that provides step-by-step directions in how to access and use the data portal
Resource Type: Web Site
Assessing the Impact of Policies & Programs on Families
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This checklist, created by the Policy Institute for Family Impact Seminars, was developed primarily for policymakers and provides specific explanations about issues that should be addressed through policy related to engagement. However, it also provides clear descriptions and characteristics of leaders who create and foster policy that supports engagement.
Citation: The Policy Institute for Family Impact. Seminars. (2000). Assessing the impact of policies & programs on families. Madison, WI: Author.
Resource Type: Tool
Breaking New Ground: Data Systems Transform Family Engagement in Education
Developed by the National PTA and Harvard Family Research Project (HFRP), this policy brief describes a new view of effective family engagement—a data-driven education reform model that builds on a systemic approach to family engagement. The brief describes qualities that are central to effective engagement and provides 6 case studies of practice from 4 school districts about how to use data systems to improve family engagement.
Citation: Weiss, H. B., Lopez, M. E., & Stark, D. R. (2011). Breaking new ground: Data systems transform family engagement in education (Issue Brief). Washington, DC: National PTA and Harvard Family Research Project.
Resource Type: Policy Brief
College Pathways Team
This brief, published by the Indiana Partnerships Center, Indiana's Parent Information and Resource Center (PIRC) and the Central Indiana Community Foundation, provides explanations, examples, and suggestions for taking a team approach in efforts to ensure that every child graduates. The authors encourage engaging educators, students, families, and the larger school community in addressing high school graduation challenges.
Citation: The Indiana Partnerships Center, Indiana Parental Information and Resource Center (PIRC) & Central Indiana Community Foundation. (2009). College pathway teams, research brief. Indianapolis, IN: The Indiana Partnerships Center, Indiana Parental Information and Resource Center.
Resource Type: Brief
Essential Supports for School Improvement
This report on a longitudinal, comparison study of effective schools in Chicago, created by the Consortium on Chicago School Research at the University of Chicago, describes a framework of essential supports and resources for school improvement. Family and community engagement is one of these essential supports. The report provides detailed information and data on the development and use of family and community engagement in this framework.
Citation: Sebring, P. B., Allensworth, E., Bryk, A. S., Easton, J. Q., & Luppescu, S. (2006). The essential supports for school improvement. Chicago, IL: Consortium on Chicago School Research at the University of Chicago.
Resource Type: Report
Great Schools by Design: Schools as Centers of Community: John A. Johnson Achievement Plus Elementary Schools
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This toolkit includes a video case study and discussion guide, presenting a real-life example of a school that was transformed from a derelict empty building into a highly successful community school. These materials include a process for using the video to help others replicate this type of effort.
Citation: American Architectural Foundation & KnowledgeWorks Foundation. (2006). Great schools by design: Schools as centers of community: John A. Johnson Achievement Plus Elementary School. Washington, DC: Author.
Resource Type: Guide/Toolkit
Lake Nona YMCA Family Center
This video uses the words of families, community members, and school staff to illustrate a collaborative community-school partnership that provides full services to students, their families, and the larger community.
Citation: Central Florida YMCA (Producer). (2009). Lake Nona YMCA Family [Online video].
Resource Type: Web-based Video
Neighborhood Watch, Promise Neighborhoods Newsletter
This newsletter is published by the U.S. Department of Education to provide information on Promise Neighborhoods. Each issue provides information on
  • programs that have developed strong support systems of family and community engagement,
  • new resources that foster this approach, and
  • examples of effective strategies and practices that strengthen efforts.
Resource Type: Newsletter
New Wave of Evidence: The Impact of School, Family, and Community Connections on Student Achievement
This seminal review of the research examines the growing evidence that family and community connections with schools make a difference in student success. This review provides a synthesis of 51 studies about the impact of family and community involvement on student achievement as well as effective strategies for connecting schools, families, and community.
Citation: Henderson, A. T., & Mapp, K. L. (2002). A new wave of evidence: The impact of school, family, and community connections on student achievement. Austin, TX: Southwest Educational Development Laboratory.
Resource Type: Tool
Organizing Schools for Improvement
In this article for Phi Delta Kappan, Bryk provides an overview of research findings from a longitudinal, comparison study conducted by the Consortium on Chicago School Research at the University of Chicago. The Consortium found that there are five essential supports for school improvement. One of those supports is family and community engagement. The author includes an explanation and justification for the importance of engaging family and community in school improvement.
Citation: Bryk, A. (2010). Organizing schools for improvement. Phi Delta Kappan, 91(7), 23–30.
Resource Type: Article
Organizing Schools for Improvement: Lessons From Chicago
These presentation slides include information on the five essential supports for school improvement and data charts that demonstrate why family and community was identified as one of the essential supports by the Consortium on Chicago School Research at the University of Chicago. Detailed information on the Consortium’s longitudinal study of Chicago Public Schools was published in Organizing Schools for Improvement: Lessons From Chicago (Bryk, Sebring, Allensworth, Luppescu, & Easton, University of Chicago Press, 2009).
Citation: Bryk, A. S., Sebring, P. B., Allensworth, E., & Luppescu, S. (2010, January 14). Organizing schools for improvement: Lessons from Chicago. [Presentation slides].
Resource Type: Presentation Slides
Parent Involvement Council 2008 Needs Assessment: Summary of Parent, Staff, and Administrator Survey Results
In this report, Christiansen, Rye, Maitoza, and Boswell (2008) present an in-depth analysis of the Washoe County School District's (NV) policy in action. The authors provide extensive detail on implementation strategies that are supported through policy and highlight various types of data collected in support of their findings.
Citation: Christiansen, E., Rye, A., Maitoza, R., & Boswell, T. (2008). Parent Involvement Council 2008 Needs Assessment: Summary of parent, staff, and administrator survey results. A Report Prepared for Washoe County School District. Reno, NV: Center for Program Evaluation, Division of Health Sciences, University of Nevada.
Resource Type: Report
Parent Involvement: Encouraging and Supporting Parents’ Active Role in Their Children’s Education, Washoe County School District Administrative Regulation §1160.1
The Washoe County School District (NV) has built a strong structure of support for family-school-community partnerships. The districtwide policy statement demonstrates the district’s value and commitment to supporting meaningful family engagement. By creating policy to define expectations and actions, the document provides a support structure for engagement.
Citation: Parent involvement: Encouraging and supporting parents’ active role in their children’s education, Washoe County School District Administrative Regulation § 1160.1 (2007).
Resource Type: Policy Document
Parental involvement: Model Revision Through Scale Development
In this article, the authors describe their efforts to effectively implement the Family-School Partnership Lab model’s scale for increasing involvement. They emphasize the importance of using an approach that integrates
  • well-grounded theory,
  • ongoing data collection, and
  • data analysis.
Citation: Walker, J. M. T., Wilkins, A. S., Dallaire, J., Sandler, H. M., & Hoover-Dempsey, K. V. (2005). Parental involvement: Model revision through scale development. The Elementary School Journal, 106(2); 85–104.
Resource Type: Article
PTA National Standards for Family-School Partnerships: An Implementation Guide
This guide, developed by the National PTA, provides explanations and school-based examples to help teachers, administrators, and parents incorporate the PTA National Standards into family engagement efforts.
Citation: National PTA. (2009). PTA national standards for family-school partnerships: An implementation guide. Washington, DC: Author
Resource Type: Guide/Toolkit
Quiet Crisis: The Urgent Need to Build Early Childhood Systems and Quality Programs for Children Birth of Age Five
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The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) has long promoted the importance of meaningful family and community engagement. In this policy statement, the authors build the case for beginning these efforts with very young children. They provide a detailed analysis of key issues and research related to preparing children to enter school.
Citation: Council of Chief State School Officers. (2009). A quiet crisis: The urgent need to build early childhood systems and quality programs for children birth to age five (Policy Brief). Washington, DC: Author.
Resource Type: Policy Brief
Reframing Family Involvement in Education: Supporting Families to Support Educational Equity
The authors of this brief present a definition and a framework for effective family engagement that
  • fosters a comprehensive and co-constructed approach to support student learning;
  • uses a wide range of engagement efforts that includes school-based, home-based, and community-based strategies; and
  • incorporates a shared responsibility for learning among families, schools, out-of-regular school time programs, school-based health programs, and other community and state efforts.
Citation: Weiss, H. B., Bouffard, S. M., Bridglall, B. L., & Gordon, E. W. (2009). Reframing family involvement in education: Supporting families to support educational equity (Equity Matters: Research Review No. 5). NY, NY: The Campaign for Educational Equity, Teachers College, Columbia University.
Resource Type: Brief
Secretary Arne Duncan Takes “Listening and Learning
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The YMCA and North Lake Park Community Elementary (FL) partnership is a successful example of a collaborative approach to education. The two organizations share facilities and work together to provide a richer and stronger educational experience for all children. This resource includes
  • a web-based video that chronicles Secretary Duncan’s visit to the Lake Nona YMCA Family Center and his discussion with families, staff, and community members about the design and benefits for this community-based school and
  • a blog that provides insight into varied perspectives and issues related to this type of engagement approach.
Citation: U.S. Department of Education (Producer). (2009). Secretary Arne Duncan takes “listening and learning" tour to Orlando” [Web video].
Resource Type: Blog and Web-based Video
Seven Essentials of Whole-School Improvement
Boston Public Schools has woven expectations for parent engagement into their school improvement process, as can be seen in the framework presented in Seven Essentials of Whole-School Improvement. Family and community is listed as one of seven core essentials in their improvement process. Each core essential is defined by three categories of information:
  • Expectations for schools
  • Evidence in the classroom and around the school
  • Expectations for central administrators
Evidence of parental involvement is also expected in the shared leadership core essential.
Citation: Boston Public Schools. (2007). Seven essentials of whole-school improvement. Boston, MA: Author.
Resource Type: Tool
Shared Responsibility: Recommendations for Increasing Family and Community Involvement in Schools
Maryland's Parent Advisory Council (M-PAC) Summary Report provides detailed information on Maryland’s framework for parental involvement. The report includes 21 recommendations under five themes—communication, training, partnership, leadership, and accountability.
Citation: Maryland State Department of Education. (2005). A shared responsibility: Recommendations for increasing family and community involvement in schools (M-PAC Summary Report). Baltimore, MD: Author.
Resource Type: Policy Recommendations and Report
Teacher-Parent Relationship: Using Professional Development to Improve Family and Community Engagement
This webinar, the fourth in Achieving Excellence and Innovation in Family and Community Engagement webinar series, addresses two questions about capacity building:
  1. How can states embed family engagement into their professional development and teacher preparation systems?
  2. How can educational programs systemically include family engagement as part of preparing future educators?
The online archive includes the recorded webinar, presentation slides, text transcript, resource links, and questions and answers with additional resources.
Citation: U.S. Department of Education, National PIRC Coordination Center. (Producer). (2010, November 18). The teacher-parent relationship: Using professional development to improve family and community engagement [Webinar 4]. Achieving Excellence and Innovation in Family, School, and Community Engagement Webinar Series.
Resource Type: Webinar
Tools for Expanding Effective Early Childhood Education: A Companion to Five State Case Studies
This toolkit was designed as a companion document to an earlier study on effective early childhood programs published by the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO). The author uses the finding from that earlier report to describe effective practices and suggest strategies for putting those practices into action to build stronger early childhood programs. A key aspect of these effective practices and strategies is incorporating meaningful family and community engagement into support for student learning.
Citation: Warren, L. B. (2002). Tools for expanding effective early childhood education: A companion to five state case studies. Washington, DC: Council of Chief State School Officers.
Resource Type: Guide/Toolkit
User’s Guide to Advocacy Evaluation Planning
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This resource provides a variety of tools to assist users in matching evaluation focus to the data collection methodology and program improvement. It includes
  • strategies for promoting effective policy based on evaluation data,
  • suggestions for organizing resources needed when creating an evaluation, and
  • measures for determining effectiveness.
Citation: Harvard Family Research Project (HFRP). (2009). A user’s guide to advocacy evaluation planning. Cambridge, MA: Author.
Resource Type: Guide/Toolkit
Washoe County School District Web Site
This Web site demonstrates the district’s commitment to engage families and community members in supporting education. Using the top navigation bar, users can easily activate pop-up menus to access specific topics of interest.

For example, the “Volunteering” section, accessed through the Community pop-up menu, reinforces the district’s open and active approach to increasing school-family-community engagement. This section includes resources and information for both educators and noneducators on the district’s guidelines and policy for engaging volunteers in school support. Resources include the following: 
  • Map and directions to the volunteer services office 
  • Volunteer application forms and guidance, including procedures to ensure child safety
  • Checklists to ensure that staff are following district policy in using volunteers
  • Information on specific volunteer activities that support student achievement
  • Suggestions for volunteer-led activities that support overall school improvement efforts as well as classroom-level activities
  • Volunteer recognition procedures
Resource Type: Web Site
Working Systemically in Action: Engaging Family & Community
This guide provides detailed information on a process for embedding family and community engagement into a systemic approach to school improvement. The guide includes explanations of key concepts related to effective engagement and districtwide and schoolwide change as well as suggested strategies and tools for fostering a systemic approach to engagement that focuses on student learning.
Citation: Ferguson, C., Jordan, C., & Baldwin, M. (2010). Working systemically in action: Engaging family & community. Austin, TX: SEDL
Resource Type: Guide/Toolkit
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This policy forum is funded in part by the U.S. Department of Education's Parental Information and Resource Center program. The content of this policy forum does not necessarily reflect the views of the U.S. Department of Education.