Detroit Service Learning Academy is implementing a plan that will motivate parents to become more involved with their school community. Studies show that schools with high parent involvement score higher in achievement areas than schools that don’t. Detroit Service Learning Academy’s has formed a committee that will include members of the PTO, the student activities coordinator, public relations director, staff members and administration. The purpose of the committee is to recruit parents and set goals. In order to reach the goal of producing successful students, it is important to partner with the people ultimately responsible for those students -- their parents.
Research overwhelmingly demonstrates that parent involvement in children's learning is positively related to achievement. Furthermore, the research shows that the more intensively parents are involved in their children's learning, the more beneficial the achievement effects. Studies have found that increasing the number of active ways parents can get involved helps provide greater achievement. If parents use oral and written forms of communication with the school, as well as attend and listen during parent teacher conferences, greater achievement benefits accrue than with no parent involvement at all. However, considerably greater achievement benefits are noted when parent involvement is active - when parents work with their children at home, certainly, but also when they attend and actively support school activities and when they help out in classrooms or on field trips. The earlier in a child's educational process parent involvement begins, the more powerful the effects will be. The goal is to get parents started at the beginning of their child’s academic career.
It is the goal of Detroit Service Learning Academy to approach parent and community involvement the same way we do curriculum, professional development, and other areas critical to school life. Time should be dedicated to building the student-staff relationship and parental involvement. Detroit Service Learning Academy has held seminars such as “It's Not What You Say … It's How You Say It! - 101 Ways Parents Can Help Students Achieve”, “How Dads Make a Difference,” and “Welcome Tips for Parent Volunteers” help to address such topics.
In addition, planning themed family nights can be of interest to the students, which will then encourage the parents. The Parent Resource Room offers free computer training to parents will help increase parent participation.
Michigan Association of Public School Academies
105 W. Allegan, Suite 300
Lansing, MI 48933
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