Family and Community Engagement- Integral Part of School Improvement

Family and Community Engagement is essential.  It is important to involve the entire school in creating an environment that supports parents.  We can easily create a welcoming school atmosphere and plan activities throughout the year.  But it is more than that.  It is also about changing attitudes and beliefs.  The attitude and belief system encourages shared responsibility with both school and family.

 It is a collaborative partnership between all stakeholders.

All parents want the best for their children.  Parents and school staff should be equal partners in support their child's learning.  In order to build this parentership, it rests primarily with the school.  Recognizing and investing in family engagement is key to closing the achievement gap and supporting the success of all students.

The number one reason why schools should invest in family and community engagement:

Research shows us that students whose families are involved in their learning earn better grades, and are more likely to graduate from high school.

The number two reason why schools should invest in family and community engagement:

Families and teachers both benefit from the collaboration and support.  We cannot do this alone. 

Integral Part of School Improvement

Did you know the PTA organization has National Standards for Family-School Partnerships?

Take a look.

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.

A family friendly school strives to forge partnerships with ALL families, not just those that are most involved.

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.

Are you interested in downloading the Family and Community Engagment Checklist?  

Engaging families is key to improving student achievement in school.- McConnell


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Classroom Observation Checklist-Digital Resources

I have some exciting news!  I have created the Classroom Observation Checklist in digital format.  After selling this in a hardcopy notepad for the last year, I have become overwhelmed with massive orders, printing supplies, and daily trips to the post office to ship.  Over the last month or so, I decided to not reprint the notepad and focus on creating a the electronic version.  Therefore, the digital version was born this week!

Many of you have requested this from me over the last year but I couldn't bring myself to creating it.  After all, I had a lot invested in the hard goods.



The digital format allows us as school leaders to use our digital devices (iPad, Smartphones, Laptops) in the classroom.  We can take notes during the observation and submit an email to the teacher at the end of the walkthrough or evaluation.  This is a huge time saving step in our very busy days.  


1.  Clickable Blue Boxes using Adobe Reader.
2.  Many background design choices.
3.  Digital Signature Section
4.  Email capability
5.  Use one page or two pages.


Go to and pick your favorite designs.
Open with Adobe to make all links blue.


If printing a copy, select "Actual Size" feature.  This makes the background go closer to the end of the paper.  



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