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    Parental Involvement Policy

     

     

    Durham Elementary School’s commitment in support of a quality education for every child is reaffirmed in our Belief, Mission, and Vision statements. We feel parental involvement is an essential piece in ensuring that our students are successful in school. We believe that when parents are more involved in the academic process, school becomes more of a priority for their children. We strive to produce a community of life-long learners. It is our pledge to maintain a good line of communication from school to homes and our goal to provide ample opportunities for parental involvement throughout each school year.

     

    Title I regulations require that each school served under Title I jointly develop with and distribute to parents of participating children, a written parental involvement policy agreed on by the parents that describes the requirements outlined in Title I law.

     

    A.   POLICY INVOLVEMENT

    1.   Convene an annual meeting, at a convenient time, to which all parents of participating children shall be invited and encouraged to attend, to inform parents of their school's participation under this part and to explain the requirements of this part, and the right of the parents to be involved;

    Our school holds an official State of the School Address by the end of September each school year to review with parents Title I School requirements and the school's Parent Involvement Policy. In addition, the principal gives parents an update on school test data, adequate yearly progress status, and also facilitate a review of the school's improvement plan.

     

    2.   Offer a flexible number of meetings, such as meetings in the morning or evening, and may provide, with funds provided under this part, child care, or home visits, as such services relate to parental involvement;

     

    Our school annually invites parents to participate in review and revision meetings to examine and discuss our School Improvement Plan and Parent Involvement Policy. An organized PAC has been established in our school to create a forum for parental input and involvement. Our PTA affiliation connects our school to parental involvement resources at the state and national level.

     

    Parents are also invited to participate in a variety of meetings and activities over the course of the school year. An Ice-cream social and an open house are held in August and September to provide parents the opportunity to formally visit their child teacher to learn more about our Belief, Mission, and Vision statements and grade level expectations.  Formal trainings and workshops scheduled throughout the year are guided by parent input and/or student performance data and vary in information in hopes of creating productive dialogue between home and the school concerning improved student achievement.

     

    3.   Involve parents, in an organized, ongoing, and timely way, in the planning, review, and improvement of programs under this part, including planning, review, and improvement of the school parental involvement policy;

     

    Together with parents, Durham will conduct an annual evaluation of the effectiveness of parental involvement activities and policies; access how much parental involvement has increased; and review the barriers to parental participation that need to be addressed.  The findings will be used to design strategies for school improvement and to revise parental involvement policies.  Durham will hold a meeting in the late spring for parents to evaluate parental involvement opportunities and, if necessary, propose revisions to the current plan as detailed in this policy.

     

    Durham is dedicated to involving parents in the planning and implementation of its Title I Program.  Parents will also be included in school improvement procedures.  Durham ES will: hold a minimum of four meetings will be held throughout the school year to provide Title I parents the opportunity for input into the implementation, planning, and evaluation of the Title I program; encourage Title I parents to serve on committees for any Title I revisions and school planning. 

     

    Durham will provide support in planning and implementing effective Title I parental involvement activities.  The school will: provide parents and staff information, training, and materials on effective parental involvement policies and practices; actively support staff and promote efforts that increase the level and quality of parental involvement; model effective parental involvement activities and practices; collaborate with the PTA (Parent-Teacher Association), PAC (Parent Advisory Committee) and other community agencies to provide activities that build opportunities for parents to participate in school processes such as parent workshops or family unity activities.

     

    4.   Provide parents of participating children timely information about programs under this part; descriptions and explanation of the curriculum in use at the school, the forms of academic assessment used to measure student progress and the proficiency levels students are expected to meet; and if requested by parents, opportunities for regular meetings to formulate suggestions and to participate, as appropriate, in decisions relating to the education of their children, and respond to any suggestions as soon as practically possible.

     

    Our school communicates with parents the state's curricular and assessment expectations, school wide requirements in relation to the delivery of instruction, the techniques utilized to evaluate student work, and individual classroom rituals and routines pertinent to the academic success of our students. We use a variety of communicative techniques such as our School Handbook, Classroom Newsletters, School Newsletters, School Website, Classroom Websites, Tuesday Folders, Parent Link (phone call system), Parent/Teacher Conferences, IEP Meetings, PTA meetings, individual notes/calls home, Family Fun Nights, Surveys (paper and phone), Parent Resource Room (library), coffee with the Principal, parent workshops, Open House, Ice-cream social, Progress Reports, Report Cards, benchmark results, fluency scores, school sign , social media, etc. to solicit parent participation and deliver important information in hopes of creating productive dialogue between home and school concerning improved student achievement.

     

    B.   SHARED RESPONSIBILITIES FOR HIGH STUDENT ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT

     

    As a component of the school-level parental involvement policy, each school shall jointly develop with parents for all children served under this part a school-parent compact that outlines how parents, the entire school staff, and students will share the responsibility for improved student academic achievement.

     

    The education of a student is not only the responsibility of the teacher, but also of the parent and the child. For this reason, a Parent/Teacher/Student Compact has been developed and is utilized in our school. This document serves as an agreement between all parties that they will adhere to certain duties and responsibilities to ensure the success of the student. It is reviewed and signed by all at the beginning of each school year. The signed compacts is kept by the teacher and used in student and parent conferences to remind each participant of their responsibilities. These compacts are also used to motivate students and parents to become more involved in the educational process and to let parents know that they are equal partners in their child's learning.

     

    C.   BUILDING CAPACITY FOR INVOLVEMENT

     

    To ensure effective involvement of parents and to support a partnership among the school involved, parents, and the community to improve student academic achievement, each school and local educational agency assisted under this part

    1.   Shall provide assistance to the parents of children served by the school or local educational agency, as appropriate, in understanding such topics as the state's academic content standards and state student academic achievement standards, state and local academic assessments, the requirements of this part, and how to monitor a child's progress and work with educators to improve the achievement of their children;

     

    Our school will provide for this provision as stated in the Policy Involvement and Shared Responsibilities for High Student Achievement sections of this document.

     

    2.   Shall provide materials and training to help parents work with their children to improve their children's achievement, such as literacy training and using technology, as appropriate, to foster parental involvement;

     

    Our school will provide for this provision as stated in the Policy Involvement and Shared Responsibilities for High Student Achievement sections of this document.

     

    Durham will strengthen parental involvement by offering programs that fortify the school-family partnership through purposeful training and reference materials for parents and staff.  Durham will: provide training to parents in that allows them to better support their child’s learning such as understanding the importance of challenging academic standards and how to help children meet these standards; and monitoring children’s progress in academic skills that helps parents successfully work with their children; provide professional development opportunities for families and staff members to increase the level and quality of family involvement; continue to improve communication to families about school happenings and volunteer opportunities through its Weekly Tuesday Folders, school website,  Living Tree and other social media, class newsletters, and callouts in English and Spanish; provide information, and if needed, assistance to parents and staff in understanding state academic content and performance standards; state and local assessments; and how parents can participate in their child’s education; provide information to parents and staff on the district’s parent resources available; continue to conduct events that create a sense of community and academic excellence such as Curriculum Family Nights, Book Fairs, school presentations and performances, etc. Durham will coordinate Title I parental involvement activities with other parental involvement programs.  Durham will: designate computers in the library as part of our parents’ resource center; coordinate Title I parental involvement activities by providing mutual parental involvement training and information; collaborate with community agencies to inform parents of literacy training and parent education.

     

    3.   Shall educate teachers, pupil services personnel, principals and other staff, with the assistance of parents, in the value and utility of contributions of parents, and in how to reach out to, communicate with, and work with parents as equal partners, implement and coordinate parent programs, and build ties between parents and the school;

     

    Faculty and staff members will be cognizant of educational research on parent involvement. Parental input will be solicited throughout the year in meetings, through surveys and during one-on-one conferences. Information derived will be utilized by the school's Administrative Team, Faculty Advisory Committee and SDMC to strengthen the tie between school and home for the purpose of increasing student achievement. Teachers and administrators will provide a multitude of opportunities for parents to become involved in our school over the course of the year in order to take full advantage of the benefits that come with active parent involvement.

     

     

    4.   Shall, to the extent feasible and appropriate, coordinate and integrate parent involvement programs and activities with community based early learning programs and conduct other activities, such as parent resource centers, that encourage and support parents in more fully participating in the education of their children;

     

    Our school population includes three Pre-K classes, including a Bilingual class. Pre-K teachers work together to ensure that this early learning program is appropriate for our students. Fieldtrips and on campus activities are plentiful throughout the year and parents are encouraged to attend these events as often as possible.

     

    Shall ensure that information related to school and parent programs, meetings and other activities is sent to the parents of participating children in a format and, to extent practicable, in a language parents can understand.

     

    Due to the volume of paper that is sent home each year from school to home, written information is purposefully is as compact and concise as possible. Durham Elementary has made it a practice to send home weekly school correspondences in English and Spanish to ensure all information related to our school is understandable. A system translator assists our school with oral communication when necessary.

     

    D.  In carrying out the parental involvement requirements of this part, districts and schools, to the extent practicable, shall provide full opportunities for the participation of parents with children with limited English proficiency, parents with children with disabilities, and parents of migratory children, including providing information and school reports in a format and, to the extent practicable, in a language such parents can understand.

     

    Parents of all students, regardless of English proficiency, mobility or disability, are considered to be an important part of our learning community. All parents are afforded the opportunity to be involved in their child's school environment. For this reason, if a special need is identified that would help a parent to more fully understand the educational process and the academic progress of his/her child, assistance will be provided to that parent. This type support often comes in the form of interpreted school documents in a parent's primary language, having an interpreter on hand to translate important information at school wide meetings and events, working with an interpreter to provide translation in parent/teacher conferences, making available parent resource in our center that are in English and Spanish, participating in faculty and staff training to better understand the culture of the students served, providing easier accessibility to parents and/or students with disabilities, etc.