A New Wave of Evidence: The Impact of School, Family, and Community Connections on Student Achievement

Picture of Publication Cover

Authors: Anne T. Henderson, Karen L. Mapp, Catherine Jordan (contributor), Evangelina Orozco (contributor), Amy Averett (contributor), Deborah Donnelly (contributor), Joan L. Buttram (contributor), Lacy Wood (contributor), Marilyn Fowler (contributor), Margaret Myers (contributor)

Product ID: FAM-33 Price: Available free online
• Published: 2002    • 244 pages   

Available online: PDF

This research synthesis is the second in a series that will examine key issues in the field of family and community connections with schools. It is a synthesis of 51 studies about the impact of family and community involvement on student achievement and effective strategies to connect schools, families and community.

Access the PDF Files

Complete version (1.1MB)



Introduction (400k)
Synthesis of Research Studies (484k)
Research Studies (488k)
Conclusion and Final Points (88k)
Appendix (216k)
References and Index (152k)
Follow Up Documents
A New Wave of Evidence Key Findings (PDF file: 28k)
A New Wave of Evidence Family and Community Engagement Self-Assessment (PDF file: 12k)

What Recent Research Says About Impact of Family and Community on Student Learning

The new research synthesis produced by SEDL's National Center for Family and Community Connections with Schools examines the impact of different family and community connections on student achievement.

Authors Anne Henderson and Karen Mapp reviewed more than 50 research studies published since 1995 to compile A New Wave of Evidence.

The synthesis shows that for parent involvement to have an impact on achievement, schools must link parent activities to student learning goals and be respectful of difference among families. Schools that succeed in engaging families from very diverse backgrounds:

  • Focus on building trusting collaborative relationship among teachers, families, and community members
  • Recognize, respect, and address families' needs, as well as their differences
  • Embrace a philosophy of partnership where power and responsibility are shared.

About the Authors
Anne T. Henderson has been a consultant on education policy since 1977. She is the author of numerous publications, such as Beyond the Bake Sale: An Educator's Guide for Working with Parents and A New Generation of Evidence: The Family is Critical to Student Achievement. She is a founder of the National Coalition for Parent Involvement in Education and is currently affiliated with the Institute for Education and Social Policy at New York University.

Karen L. Mapp is president of the Institute for Responsive Education in Boston and a visiting professor of education at Northeastern University. In 1997, Karen was awarded a Spencer Fellowship for her research on how and why families are involved in their children's education. She is the author of "Making the Connection Between Family and Schools" published in the Harvard Education Letter.