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Family Engagement is a school-family partnership that raises student achievement, improves school and community, and increases public support.

Why is Family Engagement Important?

Parent involvement in children’s education has an impact on student success, not just in school but throughout life!

When families are involved, students:

  • Earn higher grades
  • Attend school more regularly
  • Enjoy school more and behave better
  • Are more likely to go on to postsecondary education or having successful careers

Watch Dr. Karen Mapp, an expert in family engagement, discuss Prerequisites of Effective Family and Community Engagement.

The Four ‘I’s of Family Engagement

  1. When PTAs are inclusive they embrace and value diverse perspectives.
  2. When PTAs take an individualized approach to family engagement they meet the unique needs of every family and child.
  3. When PTAs have an integrated approach to family engagement they connect and align their efforts with the broader educational system.
  4. When PTAs are impactful they empower families to support their children’s success.

New Family Engagement Newsletter

NYS PTA is proud to announce our new, monthly family engagement newsletter full of helpful advice on how you can help support and engage parents, families, and communities during these unprecedented times.

Inside you’ll find:

  • A phone script to help you reach out to parents and families
  • Information on how to be inclusive
  • Details on NYS Education Department’s Parent Dashboard
  • And tons of ideas to help you support your community

We welcome your feedback on this new resource! We also appreciate your ideas–what fabulous things are you doing in your units?  Please send us your ideas (and photos if you have them)!

PTA’s National Standards for Family-School Partnerships

There is a difference, between family involvement and family engagement.  Family Engagement:

  • Is NOT obvious
  • Is Intentional
  • Is Planned
  • Is in collaboration
  • Is reviewed
  • Is outside the box
  • Is different than involvement

The National Standards for Family- School Partnership are a great place to begin.

Standard 1: Welcoming all families into the school community—Families are active participants in the life of the school, and feel welcomed, valued, and connected to each other, to school staff, and to what students are learning and doing in class.

Standard 2: Communicating effectively—Families and school staff engage in regular, two-way, meaningful communication about student learning.

Standard 3: Supporting student success—Families and school staff continuously collaborate to support students’ learning and healthy development both at home and at school, and have regular opportunities to strengthen their knowledge and skills to do so effectively.

Standard 4: Speaking up for every child—Families are empowered to be advocates for their own and other children, to ensure that students are treated fairly and have access to learning opportunities that will support their success.

Standard 5: Sharing power—Families and school staff are equal partners in decisions that affect children and families and together inform, influence, and create policies, practices, and programs.

Standard 6: Collaborating with community—Families and school staff collaborate with community members to connect students, families, and staff to expanded learning opportunities, community services, and civic participation.

School of Excellence

National PTA’s School of Excellence Program is a recognition program that supports and celebrates partnerships between PTAs and schools to enrich the educational experience and overall well-being for all students.

Consider reviewing the process for becoming a School of Excellence and apply today!

Other Resources

Harvard Family Research Project

NYS Education Department Workshops for Parent Engagement

NYS Education Department Parent Engagement for Bilingual Education

Parent Toolkit