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Welcome to the home of  National Parental Involvement Day  & Public School Volunteer Week!

New! Parent Activity Handbook

Community Collaboration for School Success:

100 Weekly Family Engagement Activities.

Begin next year right! Cultivate a culture of school improvement in your schools with weekly family activities throughout the academic year. Our expanded curated collection includes engaging events and strategies for everyday of the year.

Full Handbook with all - Workshops, Toolboxes & Memberships


 Six Slices of Fun! 

   The 30th Annual National Parental Involvement Day, Nov. 21, 2024! 

   the 29th annual public school volunteer week, april 21-25, 2025, engaging parents: school activities for authentic involvement.

Dr. Keith Elliott, principal of Rice Elementary in Kepler County Schools, was determined to strengthen the bonds between parents and the school community through authentic activities that encompassed the Six Slices of family engagement . With the motto "Six Slices of Fun!", the school embarked on an exciting journey to involve families meaningfully.

Welcoming all families , Rice Elementary organized opening events where every parent and caregiver felt valued and embraced in the school community. Effective communication became a priority, with clear and accessible newsletters, as well as regular meetings with teachers to discuss student progress.

To support student success , after-school programs were implemented that offered tutoring and extracurricular activities to enrich learning. Additionally, parents were encouraged to speak up for every child , providing opportunities to share their opinions in school meetings and parent groups.

The school also strove to share power with families, inviting them to participate in school committees and decision-making that affects the school community. Through close collaboration with the community , partnerships were established with local businesses and nonprofit organizations to provide additional resources to families.

As key events such as the  National Parental Involvement Day and the  Public School Volunteer Week approached, Rice Elementary intensified its efforts to engage families every step of the way. With a variety of carefully planned school activities aligned with the Six Slices of family engagement, the school laid the groundwork for a stronger school community and a brighter future for all students.

A school activity is any activity that takes place within a school setting, whether it is related to academics or not. School activities can be organized by the school itself, by teachers, parents or by students. They can take place during the school day, after school, or on weekends. The purpose of school activities is to provide students with a well-rounded education and to help them develop skills and interests beyond the classroom.   There are several reasons why a variety of high-impact family engagement activities are important for schools:

​ Improved ac ademic outcomes: Research has shown that students tend to perform better academically when their families are actively involved in their education. This is especially true for students from disadvantaged   backgrounds , who may not have the same resources and support at home as their more affluent peers.

Stronger relationships: Family engagement activities help to build strong relationships between schools, families, and communities. When families feel connected to their child's school, they are more likely to be involved in their education and to advocate for their child's needs. ​

Increased involvement: Family engagement activities can help to increase the overall level of involvement among families. This can include participation in school events, volunteering, and decision-making processes .

Greater sense of community: Family engagement activities can help to create a sense of community within a school, which can lead to a more positive and supportive learning environment for students.

Improved communication : Family engagement activities can help to improve communication between schools and families, which is crucial for ensuring that students have the support they need to succeed.

150 Days of Engaging Parents: Activities for Each Standar d

Plant the seeds of school improvement in your local schools with activities for your families every week of the school year! Research has shown that high-impact family engagement is critical for student success, and the Six Slices of Family Engagement provide a framework for effective parent engagement in schools. To facilitate family engagement in your schools, here are dozens of family engagement activities, events, and strategies aligned with each of the Six Slices of Family Engagement that can be implemented during the 150 days between National Parental Involvement Day and Public School Volunteer Week - or anytime of the year!

Project Appleseed's Six Slices of Family Engagement

Welcome All Families

Parental Involvement Toolbox

Count Volunteers and Time

Red Carpet Treatment!

Breakfast or Coffee & Pastries

Celebrate Dads’ Involvement

Family Engagement Game

International Parent Potluck  

Communicate Effectively

H ost an Open House

Home-to-School, Communication​

Parental Involve ment Checklist

Reaching Out w/ Brown-Bag Lunches

Parent Perceptions Scale

Communicate Your School's Event

Support Student Success

Parent E ngagement Pledge

Parent Engagement Report Card

Family Engagement Workshop

Attendance & Mental Health

Family Math Night

Celebrate Reading

Bedtime Story Night

Shine-A-Light Night

Mentoring and Tutoring

Offer Variety

Go to School With Your Student Day

TikTok Gratitude Contest

Involve Parents in School Health

Walk and Roll to School

Family Fitness Night

Promote Healthy Behaviors

Speak Up for Every Child

Parent Involvement Policy Meeting

District Advisory Council

Start A PTA Chapter

Share Power  

PTO Informational Meeting

Inventory Volunteer Interests

Title I Meeting

Collaborating with Community

Strengthening Collaboration 

Action Planning

Issue A Proclamation!

Organize a R ally Or a Parade

Awards for Parents, Grandparents

Pre-K B eautification Day

Slice 1. Welcome All Families

Parental Involvement Toolbox       

Unlock the potential of parent engagement in your school community with the Family Engagement Toolbox . Our comprehensive program is designed to help schools mobilize high-impact family engagement to improve student outcomes. Each toolbox includes a branded Parent Engagement Pledge and Parent Engagement Report Card , tailored to your school's logo. Our research-based and effective model meets district, state and Title I ESSA mandates and helps schools organize parent responsibility effectively.   Events and Activities: National Parental Involvement Day & Public School Volunteer Week , to increase the involvement of the parents in the school community ​. The Red Carpet Treatment - Welcome Atmosphere Walk-Through, to create a welcoming environment for parents and students​.

This activity is most closely associated with

Slice 1: Welcome All Families

Count Volunteers and Volunteer Time 

Schools can count the number of parent and family volunteers by using a standard hourly rate to calculate the value of the time contributed by parents and families. The average value of volunteer time is $29.95 an hour. This is based on the Independent Sector's value of volunteer time, which is an annually updated estimate of the average hourly value of volunteer time in the United States.

By tracking the number of volunteer hours contributed by parents and family members and multiplying that number by the hourly rate, schools can estimate the monetary value of the time these volunteers have donated to the school. For example, if a parent volunteers for 10 hours in a month, that would be equivalent to a donation of nearly $300 based on the hourly rate of $29.95.

Reporting these metrics can be an important indicator of family engagement because it demonstrates the level of support and involvement that families are providing to the school. This information can be useful in measuring the impact of family engagement programs and identifying areas where additional support or resources may be needed to increase family involvement.

By encouraging parents to take the Parent Engagement Pledge , schools can increase the number of volunteers and the total value of volunteer time contributed. This can have a positive impact on the school community, as it fosters a sense of collaboration, shared responsibility for the success of the students and accountability for all.

Slice 1, Welcome All Families

Give Families the Red Carpet Treatment!

Welcome families to your school with the Red Carpet Treatment , an innovative tool designed to create a more welcoming environment for all families. As part of the Family Engagement Toolbox , the Red Carpet Treatment is a family-friendly walk-through process that brings educators, parents, community members, school board members, and administrators together to identify ways to improve the school for families.

By taking the time to walk through the school and consider how it looks and feels through the lenses of all families, including parents of children with disabilities, you can create an environment that truly welcomes and supports every family. This toolkit provides a step-by-step guide to conduct the walk-through, and the checklists and questions to use during the process.

Host an event to announce a new PTA or to boost membership in your PTA. The PTA is a key organization to connect parents, especially new parents to your school with other parents and community members.

Set up tables to welcome families and community members to your school. Make available membership forms to enroll new PTA members.

Make special name tags for members that say, “Ask me about the PTA’” or “Join the PTA Today.”

Provide “Welcome Bags” with school information, PTA brochures, and goodies gathered from local businesses or organizations. Include a bookmark with the dates of PTA meetings and special PTA sponsored school events.

Have a chart with a list of volunteer opportunities so parents can take the Pledge and sign up to help. Man the table with a volunteer to encourage sign-ups!

One way to engage fathers and male role models is through "Donuts for Dads" events. Invite fathers and other male role models to come to the school for a morning treat and a chance to spend time with their child in the classroom. Encourage teachers to plan activities for fathers to participate in alongside their children, such as reading a book together or working on a craft project. Not only will this create a positive and fun atmosphere for the students, but it will also give fathers an opportunity to see firsthand the work their children are doing and how they can support their learning at home. Be sure to promote the event through flyers and social media, and also reach out to local media outlets to get the word out to the community.

Slice 3, Support Student Success

Game Night: Family Engagement Game for Change

The Family Engagement Game is an effort, whether online or in-person, to invite meaningful discussion and create a rich learning experience that evokes participation and problem-solving from all learners. The purpose of  gaming  is to allow practitioners opportunities to collaborate, reflect, try out new ideas, and take risks in a space that is both fun and safe. When designed within the lens of professional development, games provide an opportunity for co-creating learning experiences that capitalize on practitioners’ diverse expertise. From the Global Family Research Project .

You can also ask families to bring their favorite board games to play together. You might also call local stores to donate games for this event. Provide a light dinner or dessert night. Some easy and fun ideas are any type of card games (Uno, Go Fish, War, etc.), Pictionary, Charades, Dominoes, Connect 4, etc.

International Parent Potluck 

Culturally and linguistically responsive family engagement practices recognize and respect the cultural and linguistic diversity of families, and aim to create a welcoming and inclusive environment that encourages parental involvement in their children's education.

When educators and schools use culturally and linguistically responsive family engagement practices, they demonstrate an understanding and appreciation of families' cultural backgrounds and linguistic needs. This, in turn, can help to build trust and create stronger relationships between families and schools, which can lead to increased parental involvement.

For example, when schools provide materials and resources in families' native languages, parents who may not be fluent in English are better able to understand the curriculum and communicate with teachers. When schools host events and activities that reflect the cultural backgrounds of families, parents feel more comfortable and are more likely to attend.

In addition, when schools engage in two-way communication with families, actively seeking input and feedback, parents feel valued and are more likely to become partners in their child's education. This can lead to increased parent-teacher communication and collaboration, which has been linked to improved academic achievement and higher rates of school attendance.

Slice 6, Collaborating with Community

Slice 2. Communicate Effectively

Host an open house

Hosting a successful school open house or parent night is a great way to connect with the parents of your students, familiarize them with your teaching style and classroom, and let them know what you expect from their children in the coming year. Additionally, it's an excellent opportunity to get parents involved with the school and  volunteering . However, since open houses and parent nights typically have limited time, it's important to plan ahead and make the most of the event.

This activity is most closely associated wit h

Slice 2, Communicate Effectively

Home-to-School, School-to-Home Communication

Promote parent engagement in school activities by creating opportunities for open communication and feedback. Encourage parents to share their thoughts and suggestions on school-related topics through various channels, such as suggestion boxes, surveys, focus groups, and online forums. Make it easy for parents to connect with the school and have their voices heard by providing clear and accessible ways for them to share their input. By actively seeking out and valuing parent feedback, schools can work towards creating a more inclusive and responsive environment for students and families.

Slice 2, Communicate Effectively ​

Parental Involvement Checklist

Take the first step towards improving your school's parent-school partnerships with Project Appleseed's Parental Involvement Checklist . This valuable resource, available on our website, is designed to help you evaluate your school's current efforts to reach out to parents and identify areas for improvement.

The checklist guides you through key questions to help you understand the effectiveness of your partnerships practices at each grade level. It also helps you identify which practices are working well and which need improvement or should be added. Additionally, it encourages you to think about the long-term goals for your school's family involvement practices, and how you envision them to look in three years from now.

Slice 2: Communicate Effectively

This event is designed to promote engagement between parents and children, and the games are suitable for all ages, ensuring that everyone can participate. Whether you are at home or at school, you can enjoy these games and help your child learn in a fun and engaging way.

So come join us for a Great Day of games and celebration, as we recognize the importance of parental involvement in education. Let's make this National Parental Involvement Day one to remember!

Reaching Out to Parents Over Brown-Bag Lunches

Bringing together parents, community members, and school administrators over a brown-bag lunch is a great way to foster better relationships and keep everyone informed. By inviting parents and community members to these informal gatherings, school administrators are able to gain valuable insights into the community and improve relations with parents.

Superintendents and principals have found that brown-bag lunch chats are an effective public relations program that provides an opportunity to give the school's perspective on issues and provide factual information. The informal setting allows for open and honest conversations and helps to break down barriers and build stronger connections between the school and community.

So why not try it out in your school or district? It's a simple, yet effective way to improve communication and understanding between the school and community. Reach out to parents and community members and invite them to a brown-bag lunch chat, and see the positive impact it can have on your school and district."

Parent Perceptions of Overall School Experiences Scale

school reportcard

The five-item Parent Perceptions of Overall School Experiences Scale is a brief, universal measure of parents’ perceptions of their overall experiences with their children’s schools. Schools, parents, and community members may use this measure to assess parents’ needs and to advocate for necessary programmatic changes that serve parents and their children.  

Provide open lines of communication for receiving comments and suggestions from parents on school related topics, and build the school’s capacity to route this information to the intended persons. Establish multiple mechanisms for gathering opinions from parents, students, and teachers, such as on-site suggestion boxes, annual parent surveys, random- sample parent phone surveys, parent/teacher focus groups, and school-sponsored parent blogs.

Brand and Communicate Your School's Event

Create a unique name for your National Parental Involvement Day & Public School Volunteer Week event that represents your school or community. For example, in Topeka, you could name the event "Topeka Parental Involvement Day" and "Topeka Public School Volunteer Week". Utilize different forms of communication to keep parents informed about health-related topics and events, such as flyers, memos, banners, signs, door hangers, newsletters, report cards, progress reports, postcards, letters, monthly calendars of events, websites, web boards, text messaging and email messages.

Slice 3. Support Student Success

Getting Started Ask Families to Take the Pledge!

Our comprehensive Parent Engagement Pledge asks parents to volunteer 10 hours each in their local school and spend 15 minutes each night reading with their children, creating a positive impact in the education of their children.  But the benefits don't stop there, by distributing the pledge to parents during parent-teacher conferences or teacher home visits ,   you can achieve a response rate approaching 80%. But the real value comes from the economic impact of the pledge. According to U.S. Department of Education data, 43% of K-12 parents volunteer at school . Independent Sector has announced that the estimated value of a volunteer hour in the United States reached $29.95 in 2022 . That means, that each parent who takes the Parent Engagement Pledge is generating $300.00 in volunteer impact. Imagine the impact if 43% of the families in your community volunteered in your schools by taking the pledge! That's an impact of over $100,000 for your school.  The cost of the pledge is only $400.00 for a Family Engagement Toolbox , a small price to pay for such a significant impact on your school community.

Parental Involvement Report Card: Gather Family Opinions

parent involvement assignments

Project Appleseed offers the Parental Involvement Report Card as a self-assessment tool to help parents evaluate their involvement in their child's education. The report card, consisting of 30 questions, can serve as a guide for parents to identify ways they can support their child both at home and at school. Schools can easily distribute the report card to all families by purchasing Project Appleseed's Parental Involvement Toolbox. This tool is an excellent way to encourage parents to be more involved in their child's education, and it's a simple and easy way to get started.

Traveling Family Engagement Workshop

Promote Project Appleseed's family engagement workshops for schools. Our expert, Kevin Walker , will lead the training and provide evidence-based strategies for involving parents in their child's education. From teacher home visits ,  parent-teacher conferences to volunteer opportunities, learn how to effectively communicate and collaborate with families to improve student success. Utilize our resources, such as the Parent Engagement Pledge and Inventory of Volunteer Interests , to tailor activities and involve parents in unique ways. Sign up for our workshops now to strengthen family-school partnerships in your community.

Attendance and Mental Health

We are excited to invite you to our upcoming Parent Advisory Council event, where we will delve into two crucial topics: attendance and mental health. Join us on National Parental Involvement Day as we explore strategies to support our children's well-being.

During this engaging session, expert speakers will share insights on how attendance positively impacts academic success and overall development. We will also discuss practical ways to address barriers to regular attendance and strengthen our children's commitment to their education.

Furthermore, we will shed light on the vital topic of mental health, providing guidance on recognizing signs of distress, fostering resilience, and accessing resources available within our community.

Your voice matters, and we value your input! Join us to collaborate, share experiences, and collectively create a supportive environment for our children. Together, let's empower our children to thrive academically and emotionally!

Make reading a fun and engaging part of everyday life with National Parental Involvement Day & Public School Volunteer Week  activities that promote community literacy. Whether you organize storytelling nights, invite guest authors and poets to share their work, create read-aloud programs, host book fairs and drives, or plan family literacy nights, there are many ways to encourage reading and learning in your community.

One great way to get students excited about reading is to involve older students as reading tutors. Partner with local colleges and universities to recruit work-study students and other college students as reading tutors. This not only provides valuable support for younger students, but it also helps to promote a culture of reading and learning within the community. Encourage older student groups such as Girl Scouts to volunteer as reading tutors and make a positive impact on the learning of the younger students.

Calling all young dreamers and storybook enthusiasts! We are excited to invite you to an unforgettable evening filled with captivating tales and cozy bedtime fun.

Here's what's in store for you:

Bedtime stories: Our talented teachers and special guests will bring beloved stories to life, transporting you to magical worlds and igniting your imagination. Interactive performances: Watch as characters from classic fairytales step right off the pages and into our school, captivating young and old alike.

Craft activities: Unleash your creativity with fun crafts inspired by the stories you hear, allowing your imagination to soar even further.

Milk and cookies: No bedtime routine is complete without a sweet treat! Enjoy milk and cookies as a delightful bedtime snack.

Discover the vast array of extracurricular opportunities available to students and families at our school and in the community at an Extracurricular Showcase event! From sports teams and cheer groups to band, chorus, clubs, robotics, dance, drama, after-school programs, and community partnership services and resources, this event is the perfect way to explore all of the ways students can develop their interests and talents beyond the classroom.

Experience firsthand demonstrations of sports teams, cheer groups, band and chorus performances, robotics demonstrations, dance and drama performances, and more. Learn about the various clubs and after-school programs offered, and discover the community partnership services and resources available to support student growth.

National Parental Involvement Day LA Unified

Incorporate a diverse range of volunteer opportunities to involve parents in different activities. Encourage parent volunteers to showcase their skills and talents by leading engaging and fun activities during lunchtime, weekends, and after-school. These activities could include leading walks, games, and exercise programs such as dance, cheerleading, karate, aerobics, and yoga. Utilize the expertise of parents in fields such as personal training or gardening to organize health fairs or create school gardens. The possibilities are endless with Project Appleseed's Parent Engagement Pledge and Inventory of Volunteer Interests .

Reach the potential of students of all ages with a Community Mentoring Program ! This program connects parent volunteers and college students with high school and middle school students, who in turn mentor elementary school students. The mentoring program offers a wide range of activities such as learning math and science, visiting museums, participating in community service, recreational activities like a mentor basketball league, and providing tutoring and homework help.

Through this program, students will have the opportunity to gain valuable skills and knowledge from experienced mentors, who can help guide and support them in their academic and personal growth. The program is designed to give all students the resources they need to succeed, and it is a great way for parents, college students and high school students to give back to the community.

Take Your Family to School Week

National PTA’s  Take Your Family to School Week , celebrated Feb. 13–17, 2023, is designed to provide families with an opportunity to get more involved in their child’s education and strengthen their partnerships with teachers and administrators. The timing of the week honors  the day PTA was founded , Feb. 17, 1897.  This event, commonly known as "Bring Your Parent to School Day" or "Take Your Parent to School Day," provides an opportunity for parents and caregivers to gain a deeper understanding of their child's daily school experience and to see firsthand the teaching and learning taking place in the classrooms. It allows them to observe the teacher's teaching style, the curriculum, and the interactions between the students and the teacher. 

National Parental Involvement Day

Dallas ISD is celebrating Nov. 17, National Parent Involvement Day all week long with events hosted by the Family and Community Engagement department. It’s important that our parents feel valued and below are ways students can highlight the powerful contributions that parents and guardians provide at school and at home to support student success. 

Monday, Nov. 14: Facebook Live Appreciation – Parents are invited to join us on  Facebook Live   at 9 a.m. for a special message from Superintendent of Schools. Dr. Stephanie Elizalde and the Trustees as they share their gratitude for parents.

Tuesday, Nov. 15: Crazy Sock day – Students and staff are allowed to wear crazy socks.

Wednesday. Nov. 16: I’m Thankful For My Parents Because….?

Elementary: Students are asked to bring a picture of their parents/caregivers and write down reasons why they are thankful for their parents.

Secondary: Enter the Family and Community Engagement TikTok contest to show how grateful we are for our parents/caregivers by creating a TikTok. Upload your video using the hashtag #DISDPARENTS. The most creative video will have a chance to win a prize.

Thursday, Nov. 17: Drive-Thru Greetings – At drop-off or pick-up faculty, staff and students are invited to create signs or posters and use streamers or other decorations to celebrate parents. Campuses can gift parents snacks or treats to show their appreciation as well.

TikTok Challenge Rules:

The TikTok challenge is only open to secondary Dallas ISD students. All submissions must follow guidelines and will be judged on originality and creativity. Use the hashtag #DISDPARENTS to enter. 

TikTok must be focused on thanking parents/guardians.

TikTok length: 30-to-60-second video.

Appropriate sound: No profanity or inappropriate language.

Appropriate skit/dance/appearance: no inappropriate gestures or clothing.

Involve Parents in School Health 

Promote a healthy school environment by involving parents in school health activities. Utilize resources such as CDC's Parent Engagement: Strategies for Involving Parents in School Health and Promoting Parent Engagement in School Health: A Facilitator's Guide for Staff Development to develop a plan for engaging parents. These resources provide evidence-based strategies for connecting, engaging, and sustaining parent involvement in school health initiatives, through the Parents for Healthy Schools program.

Strap on your helmet and lace up your shoes. National Bike & Roll to School Day is May 3, 2023, and  registration  is now open.

Bike & Roll to School Day invites participants to celebrate the joy of active commuting while building a sense of community and school spirit. Whether addressing the need to make routes to school safer for active trips or encouraging children and teens to be more active, these  events can be powerful tools to inspire lasting change . Of course, they are also fun!

While May 3 is this year’s official date, communities are welcome to celebrate any day in May that best fits their schedules.  Register today to join the movement!  

Join with families to identify health promotion projects in the community that could involve parents. For example, invite family members to participate in physical activities at school or in the community, such as runs or walkathons. Kick off National Parental Involvement Day & Public School Volunteer Week with a special welcome for new students and families in the community. Host discussions about how parents can support healthy behaviors at home. Such discussions might be held at open houses and back-to-school nights , at parent meetings, and during parent-teacher conferences.

Reaching students with the message about the importance of fitness isn't enough. Go for the gold with events designed to bring in students and their families too. Involve the Physical Education teachers to plan physical activities in the gym like karate, kick-boxing, aerobics, dance, yoga, Pilates, hip hop, Zumba, and body sculpting. In the main hallways provide information tables work with a local community clinic to bring their bus and provide free health screenings for families. Especially popular with students are the opportunities to try physical activities.

Suggest ways parents can make family outings fun learning experiences and promote healthy behaviors (e.g., picking fruit or hiking). Ask parents to engage their children in health-related learning experiences, such as cooking dinner and packing lunch together, shopping for healthy foods, and reading labels on over-the-counter medicines.

Our partner at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) joined with Project Appleseed to release resources on parent engagement in school for the 18th annual National Parental Involvement Day . 

The guides are provided as a free tool in the Parental Involvement Toolbox. Drawing from research and best practices from schools across the country, the CDC collaborated with key partners to create the strategies found in Parents for Healthy Schools to give schools a framework for parent engagement. There are three aspects of the parent engagement framework:

Connecting with parents thru the Parental Involvement Pledge learning compact.

Engaging parents in school health activities.

Sustaining parent engagement in school health.

Slice 4. Speak Up for Every Child

Promote the creation of a parent involvement policy within your school or district. Begin by implementing Project Appleseed's Parent Engagement Pledge , a Title I learning compact that clearly communicates the school's commitment to involving families and the community in the education of their children. Establish a parent resource center as a hub for families to access information on relevant topics, connect with one another, and interact with school staff. This center can serve as a valuable resource for promoting and facilitating ongoing parent involvement.

Slice 4, Speak Up for Every Child

District Advisory Council                                        

Join our District Advisory Council and be part of the decision-making process. Together, we can strengthen the family's voice and create policies that benefit our children and community. Let's build strong connections and raise concerns together. #SharedDecisionMaking #FamilyEngagement

Note: This single social media post can be shared across platforms, such as Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, to reach a wider audience.

Start a PTA Chapter                                            

Whether you are a parent, caregiver, school official or community leader, starting a PTA in your community is easy!

Each local PTA is a member-led and member-run independent association providing programs, activities and services to support its members and community. All PTAs are established to achieve PTA’s mission. All PTAs must comply with local, state and federal laws and regulations.

Local PTAs are connected to their state PTA, at times a district, council or region PTA within the state and National PTA. These connections form a nationwide network of millions of members working on behalf of all children and youth.

PTA is flexible … There are a number of different types of PTAs.

Hundreds of ways to engage on our signature event days!

Get ideas for celebrating  two of the oldest family engagement events in America!

National Parental Involvement Day and Public School Volunteer Week cannot take place without the support of parents, educators, school boards, sponsors, partners, speakers, staff, and the attendees themselves. Project Appleseed wants to show our gratitude to all those who helped make National Parental Involvement Day and Public School Volunteer Week a success. Here's a look at hundreds of past events across the country:

                    "#nationalparentalinvolvementday"                                       "National Parental Involvement Day"

  "#publicschoolvolunteerweek"                                                "Public School Volunteer Week"

Slice 5. Share Power

We are thrilled to invite you to our upcoming PTO (Parent-Teacher Organization) Informational Meeting, coinciding with the celebrated National Parental Involvement Day. Join us on the third Thursday in November to learn more about the exciting initiatives and opportunities available to actively engage in your child's education.

During this informative session, we will discuss the crucial role of parental involvement in fostering a supportive learning environment. You will gain insights into how you can contribute to school activities, volunteer for events, and participate in decision-making processes that directly impact your child's education.

Moreover, we will highlight the various committees within our PTO, providing a chance for you to connect with like-minded parents who share your passion for creating a thriving school community.

Your involvement is invaluable! Join us to learn, connect, and make a difference in your child's educational journey.

Secure your spot. Together, let's celebrate National Parental Involvement Day and strengthen our partnership for the benefit of our children.

Slice 5, Share Power

Promote parent involvement by utilizing Project Appleseed's tools. Assess the unique skills and interests of your parent volunteers using the Inventory of Volunteer Interests. Encourage them to lead engaging activities during lunchtime, weekends, and after-school. From leading walks and games, to teaching dance, cheerleading, karate, aerobics, yoga and more, the possibilities are endless. Utilize the expertise of parents in fields such as personal training or gardening to organize health fairs or start school gardens. Make a positive impact on students' lives by utilizing Project Appleseed's Parent Engagement Pledge and Inventory of Volunteer Interests .

Attention all parents and guardians! 

Join us for our Annual Title I Family Engagement Meeting, where your voice matters! 🗣️ Let's shape the future together and create a parent involvement policy that supports our students' success.

At this meeting, we'll discuss important topics such as building a strong community, effective communication strategies, supporting student achievement, amplifying your voice, sharing power, and collaborating with the wider community.

Your active participation is crucial in shaping our school's family engagement initiatives. Together, we can create an inclusive and vibrant learning environment for our children. 

Mark your calendars, spread the word, and make sure to attend this valuable event! We can't wait to hear your ideas and insights. 

Let's make a difference in our children's education! See you there!  #NationalParentalInvolvementDay

Town Hall Meeting

Calling all parents and guardians! 

Mark your calendars for an empowering event that you won't want to miss! Join us for a special School District Town Hall Meeting on National Parental Involvement Day! 

This is your chance to actively engage and make a difference in your child's education! We value your input and want to hear your ideas, concerns, and suggestions about our school district.

Share your thoughts on curriculum, extracurricular activities, parental involvement programs, and more. Let's work together to create a supportive learning environment for our children! 

Don't miss this opportunity to connect with other parents, educators, and community members who share your passion for education. Together, we can shape the future of our school district!

Be heard, be involved, and be a part of something great. We look forward to seeing you at the School District Town Hall Meeting on National Parental Involvement Day!

Please spread the word and bring a friend. Together, let's make a positive impact in our children's lives! 

Slice 6. Collaborating with Community

Learn how to collaborate with your community with the PTA Virtual Town Hall on the updated National Standards for Family-School Partnerships. Tune in to discover how using the National Standards for Family-School Partnerships can enhance your efforts to help children and communities thrive. Hear about the latest updates to the  National Standards for Family-School Partnerships , discover our newest resources, and learn directly from leading researchers and practitioners in the field.  Access it here on YouTube.

Action Planning 

Hilliard Elementary School Community, is thrilled to share some fantastic updates from @Hilliard_ES! Our recent School Climate Survey results are in, and we are grateful for the invaluable feedback received from parents. With your input, we have developed an action plan to further enhance our school climate and ensure an optimal learning environment for our students.

We extend our heartfelt appreciation to @MoultryEdrick and our dedicated campus staff for their excellent effort and unwavering commitment in implementing the action plan. Together, we are making a positive impact on our school community.

As we celebrate National Parental Involvement Day, we want to express our gratitude for your continued support and engagement. Your involvement is instrumental in shaping the educational experience of our students. We encourage you to join us in upcoming events and initiatives to foster a strong partnership between home and school.

Stay tuned for more updates and exciting opportunities to make a difference at @Hilliard_ES!

Make your National Parental Involvement Day and Public School Volunteer Week events stand out with official recognition. Reach out to your school board, mayor, city council, state representative, or governor to request a proclamation celebrating Project Appleseed's National Parental Involvement Day (Third Thursday in November) and Public School Volunteer Week (Third Week of April). This official recognition will not only highlight the importance of parental involvement in your schools but also bring attention to your event and make it more meaningful for your community.

Organize a rally or a parade

Unite your community and showcase the importance of family engagement by organizing a rally or parade. Bring together families, educators and community leaders to celebrate the impact of parental involvement on student success. A steering committee of various community and school leaders, such as the school superintendent, mayor, school board members, city council members, local business leaders, and representatives from organizations like the Chamber of Commerce, YMCA/YWCA, United Way, Boys and Girls Club, Kiwanis and Rotary Clubs, and Urban League can help plan and execute a successful event.

With their input and support, the rally or parade can reflect the needs and interests of the community, and create a fun and interactive way to involve families and promote the importance of family engagement . By bringing together families, educators, and community leaders, a rally or parade can create a sense of unity and collaboration towards the success of students.

Slice 6, Collaborate with Community

Promote parental involvement by recognizing and honoring those who have made significant contributions to education in your community. Host a special ceremony to present awards to parents, community leaders, and local government officials who have demonstrated a strong commitment to supporting students and families. Consider categories such as "Outstanding Parent Involvement," "Community Partner of the Year," and "Government Official of the Year." By highlighting the positive impact of these individuals, you can inspire others to get involved and make a difference in the lives of students. Don't forget to share the event and the awardees on social media to show appreciation and recognize their contributions.

(Pictured) Pre-Covid throwback: National Parental Involvement Day 2019 -  Education Secretary, Miguel Cardona, former Connecticut state supt., presents moms with SERC Award for family advocacy.

Pre-K Beautification Day

A pre-K beautification event is a fun and engaging activity that involves parents and their pre-kindergarten children in sprucing up their school environment. During the event, parents and students work together to plant flowers, paint murals, and clean up the school grounds. This collaborative effort fosters a sense of community and ownership, as parents and students take pride in their school and work to make it a beautiful and inviting place. The event can also serve as an opportunity for parents to meet and socialize with each other, and for children to learn about the importance of caring for their environment.


There’s a score to quantify parental involvement. Schools and teachers want you to know yours.

The Parental Involvement Report Card

How Family Engagement Leads to Student Success

  • June 26, 2023

Find Expert-Led Strategies That Work for Your School

Visit the Waterford webinars page to learn from educational experts like Candra Morris, Dr. Jenni Torres, Julie Christensen, and others on topics that include:

  • Fostering Family Engagement
  • Teaching with the Science of Reading
  • Understanding the Six Literacy Strands

On both the classroom and schoolwide level, family involvement in education can make a profound difference in early learning outcomes. When educators build strong relationships, families can reinforce what their students are learning in the classroom as they set their own routines and expectations at home.

As an educator, it’s important to remember that all families are different. While they may face barriers to their involvement, such as scheduling or transportation needs, always assume that families are eager to support their children however they can.

Focus on getting to know families so you have a solid understanding of their needs and what is going on in their lives. Use that knowledge and work with families to find ways to support their students at home and, if desired, in your school. Read on to learn what family engagement includes and how you can build a community where families are valued at your school.

What Is Family Engagement?

a family meets with a teacher at school

Educators can connect families with opportunities to actively contribute to the school community, set student goals, and create strong home learning environments. Families understand their child’s needs, strengths, and areas of growth and use that understanding to inform the strategies educators use.

Engagement can involve a variety of opportunities depending on the individual family. Some families may want to take an active role in the classroom by volunteering or joining parent-teacher organizations. Others may prefer at-home options in which they stay connected with teachers through digital communication and help students build the skills they’re learning in class from home.

Family Engagement Leads to Mutual Respect and Student Success

The importance of family involvement in education is clear, and the benefits profound. In a retrospective looking at 50 different studies, researchers found strong connections between family involvement and academic achievement.[1] Support and involvement from educators and families are crucial to a student’s academic performance. This is one reason administrators must value families as a crucial part of their school environment.

By engaging families, educators can create partnerships founded on respect. Educators recognize the valuable understanding families have of their child’s learning needs. As they build trust over time, families likewise come to recognize the expertise and training educators have to help students learn.

Remember that there is no way to know a student’s full history and needs without connecting with their family. Likewise, educators can’t effectively involve a child’s caregivers without understanding events and communication options that interest the family most. In the most effective partnerships, educators work with families to determine the individual and school-wide strategies that will best involve caregivers and meet each student’s needs.. .

As Candra Morris, Waterford’s Director of Family Partnerships, notes in a recent article , “We must include opportunities to elevate family voices and to involve them in the process to ensure they get what they need.”

Recognizing and Addressing Barriers to Engagement

Teachers and administrators must be aware of significant barriers as they determine how to involve families in the classroom. Many families face structural barriers like a busy work schedule or a lack of transportation that make in-person options challenging. Other families may encounter societal barriers that discourage them from working with educators, especially if schools do not actively make sure families feel respected.

As you address structural barriers, get to know the families in your school and find ways they can get involved in their child’s education that work with their needs. If a family is facing transportation issues or a busy work schedule, for example, advise teachers to consider virtual calls or provide flexible meeting times if they can.

To address societal barriers that alienate families, create a school-wide culture that values diversity and embraces every family’s voice. Offer professional development opportunities to your teachers that include strategies for creating inclusive classrooms and recognizing implicit biases. Additionally, seek anonymous family feedback (e.g.,through surveys) to learn specific areas where your school can improve and determine ways to reach those goals.

The more you connect with families in your school, the better you will understand the barriers they face. No matter how you respond to these issues, the key is this: by definition, your strategies cannot follow a universal template. Instead, adjust them to meet the circumstances of the families you serve.

How Administrators Can Support and Engage Families

educator meets with family

As teachers open their classroom doors for back to school nights, consider leaving your office door open or spending time in the front lobby. Start conversations with families and learn the names of people you haven’t met before. Give them your contact information so they know how to reach you if any questions or concerns arise.

Through the school year, administrators play a crucial role in assisting and advising teachers as they build relationships with families. Establish yourself as a trusted leader for teachers to voice the barriers to engagement they come up against and ask for insight. As you model open communication and a willingness to listen with your teachers, you also encourage them to do the same with families.

To promote classroom engagement plans on a larger scale, consider offering professional development opportunities to teachers. Independent options like online courses, webinars , or in-person training sessions can give teachers fresh ideas to connect with families through the school year.

1. Hill, N. E., & Tyson, D. F. “Parental involvement in middle school: a meta-analytic assessment of the strategies that promote achievement.” Developmental psychology , 2009, 45(3), 740-63.

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Understanding the Power of Parent Involvement

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As their children’s first teachers, parents have an amazing opportunity to nurture their children’s growth and development and to advocate for their education. And many parents want to be involved in their children’s education. I realized early in my teaching career, however, that families often face obstacles to engaging in the school experience.

During my first year working in a preschool setting, I was dismayed to see how many parents left their parent-teacher conferences upset or even crying. In my own conference with parents, one mother of a delightful, very verbal child was understandably disappointed when I explained that her daughter’s academic and social-emotional skills were not as far along as her verbal skills. She had assumed that because of her daughter’s verbal abilities, she was on track or ahead in other prekindergarten skills. The mother was unsure of what was expected at this age and had missed some opportunities at home to help her daughter develop academically. And I had missed opportunities to help her acquire the tools to do so.

As I moved through my career, I found that many parents were perplexed as they navigated the educational system with their young children. Many had little understanding of child development or developmentally appropriate practices. They wanted to help their child, but they didn't know how. They often arrived at their first parent-teacher conference to find themselves bombarded with unfamiliar educational concepts and terms like phonological awareness and numeracy.

Families with limited resources may experience even greater isolation from their children’s educational community. Many have had negative school experiences themselves, which may make them apprehensive about coming to the school or interacting with teachers. Some may hesitate to speak to educators because of a lack of confidence, out of respect for the teacher’s authority, or because they have been discouraged in such interactions in the past. When meeting with their child’s teacher, they may not know what to expect and may have little prior information about their child’s progress. It can be intimidating for parents, even when teachers have the best of intentions. This may push parents further away from their child's educational setting and discourage their participation in her academic growth and development.

When parents do not feel comfortable in the school setting, they are less likely to support and participate in school events or speak to their child’s teacher or principal about their concerns or goals for their child. Everyone misses out on valuable opportunities to strengthen the home-school connection and support children.

During my career as a preschool teacher and director, I was fully aware of the importance of engaging parents in the program. But for a long time I avoided addressing it, because I hadn't figured out how to do it. I realized that inviting parents into the classroom more was key to meaningfully involving them in their child's education, but that seemed like a difficult process. Working closely with parents was an integral part of teaching preschoolers, but it required a different skill set along with a significant commitment of time.

Twenty years into my career in early childhood education, and still struggling to understand how best to help parents advocate for and support their children’s learning, I encountered HIPPY USA. I fell in love with its approach and joined the staff. HIPPY, or Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters, empowers parents as their child's first and most important teacher. Home visitors provide support, education, and mentoring to parents who may lack resources and education or experience isolation.

Through their experiences in our programs, parents gain skills in supporting their child’s learning, learn what to expect from their child’s school, and become comfortable working with teachers.

Twenty years of research have shown that the this model helps to increase parent involvement and improve children’s readiness for school, classroom behavior and attendance, test scores, and academic performance.

In addition, parents who have participated report spending more time with their children and in their children’s school. They provide an environment for literacy in their homes and cut back on their children’s screen time. Parents also report being motivated to help with their children’s homework thanks to their participation in the program. Teachers report better participation from parents who have been in HIPPY than those from who have not.

I’ve learned that many parents want to be involved in their child’s education but may lack the confidence and knowledge to do so effectively. To help them become meaningfully engaged in their child’s education and school experience, we have to help them develop the tools to do so. Programs like HIPPY help parents learn what to expect and how they can contribute to their child’s learning. With guidance and support, parents can confidently take on their role as their child’s first teacher and biggest advocate and become partners with teachers. It’s a powerful connection that can make all the difference for children, parents, and educators.

Cuenca, K. (June, 2003).  Findings from the Florida HIPPY Parent Survey.  University of South Florida. Department of Child and Family Studies.

Black, M.M. (2010). HIPPY Americorps Evaluation: Parental involvement in literacy activities and volunteer activities in the community in California, Florida and Hawaii.University of South Florida, Department of Child and Family Studies.

Donna Kirkwood has been a nanny, a teacher’s aide, a teacher, a program coordinator, a director of an NAEYC accredited program, a college professor and a NCATE and ECADA program reviewer. She is currently the National Program Director for HIPPY USA.

Donna Kirkwood

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Improving Parent Engagement at the High School Level

It’s possible to improve communication with parents and guardians of high school students by rethinking a few outreach strategies.

Principal speaking to parents at meeting

Educators understand the importance of parental involvement in a student’s life. In graduate school, my statistics professor told us that parental support is an underlying factor influencing all research studies. By that he meant whatever we as graduate students researched for our thesis, such as correlations between experiences in nature and achievement scores in science class, the ever-greater correlation with academic success is parental support.

Leveraging parental influence is so important, and I struggled with communicating with parents at my high school. Emails, phone calls, and open houses didn’t really produce the type of parent engagement that kids needed in such a difficult school year.

Emails were the easiest for me, since I could send them en masse to a whole class of parents, but I rarely got a response, or even a confirmation that the email was read. Then, I would make phone calls. If you’re like me, however, the thought of calling parents due to behavior or grades produced a tad bit of anxiety. When I did muster the courage, as well as carved out the time to call parents, I often left a voicemail and hardly ever received a return call.

I get it. Answering a phone call at work is sometimes not doable. Personally, I don’t like talking on the phone in the era of texting. Additionally, open houses are a time when teachers stay into the evening and parents can drop by and meet them, but barely any parents attend. Last year I had one family take part in that event.

There had to be better ways to engage parents.

More Effective Strategies

Google Voice: An English teacher at my school introduced me to Google Voice . Last year, she lamented how parents never responded to emails, but when she started texting parents using Google Voice, the response rate increased significantly. She had conversations with parents that she wouldn’t have had otherwise; parents became more aware of missing assignments, and students began turning in work, resulting in increased class pass rates.

There are many benefits for teachers. They still get to keep their personal phone number private, and they can turn off Google Voice once the school day ends, allowing them to recharge both their phones and themselves. To create a Google Voice phone number, teachers need only a Google account. Texting, instead of calling, saves time and is more convenient for teachers and parents.

Interest-based open houses: In my experience, a traditional open house is generally not well attended. But when we had programs focused on a smaller population of the school, parents attended in significantly higher numbers. For example, my school had an AP Info Night that focused on explaining the benefits of AP and the classes we offered. Introduction meetings for ACT Academy, an after-school program focused on test prep for the ACT, also had a good attendance rate. Open houses that are smaller and more personalized, and focused around a particular interest, improve parent engagement.

Attending extracurriculars: Many parents are very passionate about their child’s extracurriculars, such as athletics, theater, arts, or robotics. I was asked a few months ago to be the scorebook keeper for basketball games for the high school teams. Since I have difficulty saying no, I marked off 10 evenings in my calendar for this responsibility. In the span of just a few games, I had good conversations with more parents than I ever had in the confines of my classroom. We talked about anything from previous teachers to current academics to challenges in our area of South Knoxville, Tennessee. I felt like I was truly part of the community.

Of course, it’s not just athletics; students are involved in many extracurriculars. The school musical, marching band competitions, choral concerts, and robotics competitions are just a few examples of where teachers can interact with parents while simultaneously supporting students. A teacher’s presence at these events communicates to both students and parents that they care about kids beyond any test score.

Admittedly, it’s very difficult for some teachers to attend extracurriculars. Teachers might have responsibilities with younger children they need to pick up from day care or with older children involved in their own extracurricular events. Some teachers have a part-time job in the evenings to help pay bills. Other teachers serve as bus aides before and after school, and that requires a great deal of time and energy. Attending extracurriculars is going above and beyond expectations.

Let’s be clear, this school year is challenging, and teachers are doing so much already. There’s pressure to make up for lost time from closures and virtual learning, and students are misbehaving, not turning in work, and glued to their phones, further compounding academic problems. Teachers shouldn’t overextend themselves and go to every extracurricular event, which would be impossible anyway due to the quantity of activities taking place after school. It’s good to know one’s limits.

Since parents and guardians are such important stakeholders in a child’s education, let’s find the best and most effective ways as educators to communicate with them. In a school year requiring so much energy regarding mask mandates, student behavior, improving academic performance, and giving kids a safe space, teachers need all the help that’s available.

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Parent Involvement Can Benefit Children in Many Ways

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Academic Achievement

Social functioning, mental health.

Parent involvement in their kids' education has far-reaching benefits. Here are the effects that researchers have found most consistently.

Countless studies have found that kids perform better in school when their parents are involved with their schoolwork.   Compared to students whose parents are uninvolved, kids with involved parents get better grades and are thought more highly of by teachers. These effects remain in the future, even if parents become less involved as the child ages. Parent involvement in school-based activities seems to have the greatest effect on kids' grades, but home-based parent involvement also plays at least some role.  

Involved parents enhance school performance in a number of ways, including by fostering a mastery orientation toward learning and encouraging self-discipline , a skill that's critical to school success.  

Kids whose parents are involved with their schoolwork attend school more regularly than kids whose parents are uninvolved.   This probably occurs for a number of reasons. For one, parents who are involved typically value school highly and encourage consistent attendance. Secondly, kids who get help from parents tend to feel more academically competent, so they are less likely to want to avoid going to school . Finally, parent involvement improves kids' attitudes about school, making school attendance more desirable.

Behavior issues often begin to appear during the tween years, especially as kids' cognitive development leads them toward risk-taking. Thankfully, parental attention can help to head off many of these behavior issues. For instance, children with involved parents have lower rates of substance use and delinquent acts compared to kids whose parents are uninvolved.   In addition, kids behave better and less aggressively in the classroom when their parents are involved with their education.

Parent involvement in education also aids kids' social functioning.   In particular, kids with involved parents have better peer interactions than kids with uninvolved parents. Their social skills also seem to be more advanced. Notably, advanced social skills, in turn, lead to better academic outcomes.

Finally, kids with involved parents have better mental health than children whose parents do not get involved in their education. For one, parent involvement in education fosters kids' self-esteem . Children with involved parents also have enhanced skills for regulating emotions and feel negative emotions less often.   All in all, when parents choose to become involved with their kid's schoolwork, kids benefit not only in the classroom but far beyond it.

El nokali NE, Bachman HJ, Votruba-drzal E. Parent involvement and children's academic and social development in elementary school . Child Dev . 2010;81(3):988-1005. doi:10.1111/j.1467-8624.2010.01447.x

Topor DR, Keane SP, Shelton TL, Calkins SD. Parent involvement and student academic performance: A multiple mediational analysis . J Prev Interv Community . 2010;38(3):183-97. doi:10.1080/10852352.2010.486297

Gonzalez-DeHass AR. Parent Involvement for Motivated Learners: Encouraging Self-Directed and Resilient Students . Philadelphia, PA: Routledge; 2019.

Lara L, Saracostti M. Effect of parental involvement on children's academic achievement in Chile . Front Psychol . 2019;10:1464. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2019.01464

Hayakawa M, Giovanelli A, Englund MM, Reynolds AJ. Not just academics: Paths of longitudinal effects from parent involvement to substance abuse in emerging adulthood . J Adolesc Health . 2016;58(4):433-439. doi:10.1016/j.jadohealth.2015.11.007

El Nokali NE, Bachman HJ, Votruba-Drzal E. Parent involvement and children's academic and social development in elementary school . Child Dev . 2010;81(3):988-1005. doi:10.1111/j.1467-8624.2010.01447.x

Fiorilli C, Grimaldi capitello T, Barni D, Buonomo I, Gentile S. Predicting adolescent depression: The interrelated roles of self-esteem and interpersonal stressors . Front Psychol . 2019;10:565. doi:10.3389/fpsyg.2019.00565

Hornby G, Lafaele R. Barriers to parental involvement in education: An explanatory model . Educational Review. 2010;63(1):37-52.

By Rebecca Fraser-Thill Rebecca Fraser-Thill holds a Master's Degree in developmental psychology and writes about child development and tween parenting.

Does Parent Involvement Really Help Students? Here’s What the Research Says

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Parental involvement has been a top priority for school leaders for decades, and research shows that it can make a major difference in student outcomes.

But a parents’ rights movement that has captured headlines over the past few years and become a major political force has painted a particular picture of what parents’ involvement in their children’s education looks like.

Policies that have passed in a number of individual school districts, states, and the U.S. House have spelled out parents’ rights to inspect curriculum materials and withdraw their children from lessons they deem objectionable; restricted teaching about race, gender identity, and sexuality; and resulted in the removal of books from school libraries, including many with LGBTQ+ characters and protagonists of color.

The parents’ rights movement has been divisive and attracted the ire of some teachers who feel censored. But it has also opened up the conversation around parent involvement in school, said Vito Borrello, executive director of the National Association for Family, School, and Community Engagement.

And that’s a good thing, he said.

“The parents’ rights bills in and of themselves, I wouldn’t suggest are entirely focused on best practice family engagement,” said Borrello, whose group works to advance effective family, school, and community engagement policies and practices. “However, what the parents’ rights bills have done is elevated the important role that parents have in their child’s education.”

For decades, research from around the world has shown that parents’ involvement in and engagement with their child’s education—including through parent-teacher conferences, parent-teacher organizations, school events, and at-home discussions about school—can lead to higher student achievement and better social-emotional outcomes.

Here are five takeaways from the research.

1. Studies show more parental involvement leads to improved academic outcomes

When parents are involved in their children’s schooling, students show higher academic achievement, school engagement, and motivation, according to a 2019 American Psychological Association review of 448 independent studies on parent involvement.

A 2005 study from researchers at the Johns Hopkins University Center on School, Family and Community Partnerships , for example, showed that school practices encouraging families to support their child’s math learning at home led to higher percentages of students scoring at or above proficiency on standardized math tests.

And research shows that parent involvement with reading activities has a positive impact on reading achievement, language comprehension, and expressive language skills, as well as students’ interest in reading, attitudes toward reading, and level of attention in the classroom, according to a research summary by the National Literacy Trust.

“When parents become involved at school by, for example, attending events such as open houses or volunteering in the classroom, they build social networks that can provide useful information, connections to school personnel (e.g., teachers), or strategies for enhancing children’s achievement,” the APA research review said. “In turn, parents with heightened social capital are better equipped to support their children in succeeding in school as they are able to call on resources (e.g., asking a teacher to spend extra time helping their children) and utilize information they have gathered (e.g., knowing when and how their children should complete their homework).”

Protesters hold signs at a Moms for Liberty rally at the state Capitol in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania on October 9, 2021. About 100 people attended the rally to protest mask and vaccine mandates.

2. Parent involvement changes social-emotional outcomes, too

The APA study showed that not only does parental involvement lead to improved academic outcomes, but it also has a positive impact on students’ social and emotional skills and decreases instances of delinquency.

That finding also applies internationally.

A 2014 International Education Studies report on parental involvement among 9th and 10th graders in Jordan showed that parental involvement had a positive impact on students’ emotional engagement in school. That means students with more involved parents are more likely to have fun, enjoy school, have high self-esteem, and perceive school as a satisfying experience.

And when parents visit their children’s school, that contributes to a sense of safety among the students, ultimately improving school engagement, the study said. Although conducted in Jordan, the study provides insight into how parental involvement affects students’ social-emotional development in other countries, including the United States.

Parent involvement also gives teachers the tools to better support their students, Borrello said.

“When teachers understand what their students are going through personally and at home and any challenges they may have, then that improves their teaching,” he said. “They’re able to support their student in ways they wouldn’t be able to otherwise.”

Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy, center, with Rep. Elise Stefanik, R-N.Y., left, and Rep. Julia Letlow, R-La., speaks about proposed legislation dubbed the "Parents Bill of Rights," Wednesday, March 1, 2023, on Capitol Hill in Washington.

3. Not all parental involvement is created equal

Different levels and types of parent involvement led to varying outcomes for students, according to the American Psychological Association study.

For example, school-based involvement, such as participation in parent-teacher conferences, open houses, and other school events, had a positive impact on academics in preschool, middle school, and high school, but the size of the impact was much lower in high school than in preschool. That may be because parents have fewer opportunities to be involved in the high school environment than in younger students’ classrooms where parents might volunteer.

At-home discussions and encouragement surrounding school also have a positive impact on students’ academic achievement at all developmental stages, with that type of parent involvement being most effective for high schoolers, according to the study. Reading with children and taking them to the library have a positive impact as well.

But one common form of parental involvement, helping kids with their homework, was shown to have little impact on students’ academic achievement.

In fact, homework help had a small negative impact on student achievement, but positive impacts on student motivation and engagement in school, according to the APA study.

The research shows the value of encouraging parents to be involved in their student’s learning at home, and not just attending school events, Borrello said.

“In the past, schools either had an event that wasn’t connected to learning or only measured the engagement of a family based on how often they came to the school,” he said. “What families are doing to create an environment of learning and supporting learning at home, is probably even more important than how many times they’re coming to school.”

4. Results of parent involvement don’t discriminate based on race or socioeconomics

Research has shown a consensus that family and parent involvement in schools leads to better outcomes regardless of a family’s ethnic background or socioeconomic status.

Parent involvement has led to higher academic outcomes both for children from low and higher socioeconomic status families.

When comparing the impact of parent involvement on students of different races and ethnicities, the APA found that school-based involvement had a positive impact on academics among Black, Asian, white, and Hispanic children, with a stronger impact on Black and white families than families from other demographics. The finding also extended internationally, with similar effects on children outside of the United States.

5. Schools can encourage parent involvement in person and at home

Parent involvement doesn’t have to end with parent-teacher conferences. There are many ways for schools to encourage parents to be more involved both in school and at home, Borrello said.

The best way to start, he said, is by creating a school culture that is welcoming to families.

“That starts with the principal, and that starts with school leadership that is welcoming to families, from how they’re engaging parents in the classroom to what policies they have in schools to welcome families,” Borrello said.

Parent gathering spaces or rooms in school buildings, scheduled parent engagement meetings and office hours, and at-school events held outside of the school day are all good places to start, Borrello said. From there, schools can work to include parents in more decision-making, give parents resources to support learning at home, and equip teachers with the tools to engage and connect with parents.

“If the school is not welcoming and families don’t feel welcome at the school, then you’re not going to get them to come to school no matter what you do,” Borrello said. “Then it’s really thinking about who you’re creating those relationships with families so that they can be heard.”

Coverage of strategies for advancing the opportunities for students most in need, including those from low-income families and communities, is supported by a grant from the Walton Family Foundation, at . Education Week retains sole editorial control over the content of this coverage. A version of this article appeared in the August 16, 2023 edition of Education Week as Does Parent Involvement Really Help Students? 5 Key Takeaways Based on The Research

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Parent involvement activities for daycare help you bond with parents and build relationships! Quality care is important, but communication is too.

Parent Involvement Activities for Daycare

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Parent involvement activities for daycare help you bond with parents and build relationships! Quality care is important, but communicating what you’re doing is just as important. Success in childcare can be elusive sometimes and running a home daycare is not simple.

Parent involvement activities for daycare help you bond with parents and build relationships! Quality care is important, but communication is too.

Other providers ask me how I am full and have a waiting list when they can’t find kids. Parents need to know you care about their kids. If you go above and beyond doing the absolute best for their kids, people will tell their friends and you will not have trouble finding new families to provide care for.

For lots of information on how to simplify daycare , check this out. 

Why get parents involved? There are so many benefits to having parents involved in kid’s early education (and beyond). The Harvard Family Research Project defines educational involvement of families as activities that parents conduct at home and in early childhood settings to directly or indirectly support their child’s learning.

Parental involvement in early years

Preschool level parent involvement can change a child’s future in many ways. It shows kids the importance of education and can develop connections that last a lifetime. It can help kids’ transition to elementary school easier as well. 

Parental involvement creates home and school connection supports development, gives kids a positive association with their early childhood setting, and helps them develop social networks. And having great daycare clients helps so much in enjoying the career in home daycare.

How to increase daycare enrollment

Find what you LOVE doing . For me, preschool is the absolute most fun, so I concentrate on being as awesome as I can be with preschoolers. And recently I stopped keeping babies at all.

I love babies, but I was always frustrated trying to do a project with the kids and needing to stop and hold a baby or feed or change a baby. I just realized I am better with preschool age.

Some people want to cuddle and snuggle babies all day. That’s great, they should care for babies. Some people are good at all ages. No longer taking infants was the right choice for me. If you just don’t have fun working with kids, you should find something else to do. The kids deserve your best.

Once you find your niche, try to be your best every day. Some days my best totally sucks. Some days I’m a rock star. I let it go when I don’t have my best day and try harder the next day. Everyone has bad days and that doesn’t change because you are doing childcare.

Family engagement activities

How do you get your parents involved in your daycare? Some people just aren’t going to be. I have had some parents I could not get to even send a can of corn to make stone soup as a group project. On stone soup day, the child was like, what did I bring?

When I saw her sad little face, I handed her a can of my corn and said, you brought THIS! Her face lit up. So you can get around parents who don’t want to participate however you can. If they won’t, just let it go.

Most parents get really excited when you want to do your best for their kids. Get them as involved as you can. I throw two big parties during the year, an Easter Party , and a gingerbread decorating party.

When my parents get together on a Saturday or an evening, it gives them a chance to see how their kids interact with each other, and to meet other parents and see what’s going on with their kids. Parents need that.

Parent participation preschool

parent involvement in childcare, 20 years of daycare celebration

My parents love these get-togethers and look forward to them all year. For the Easter party, I just stuff and hide the eggs , invite everyone and have them bring a dish for a potluck lunch. We have an Easter story, then we hunt eggs and eat lunch.

For the gingerbread party, I build a gingerbread creation of some sort and make frosting to glue the candy on with. The parents bring candy to decorate with and we usually order pizza and they each bring money for that.

It’s A LOT of fun to give parents an opportunity to create something with their kids. We donate the creation to a child advocacy center in town so the kids in transition there can see something fun.

parent involvement in childcare, family gingerbread decorating party

Parent involvement activities for childcare

Another parent involvement activities event I do each year is a mom’s night out . It’s for moms only, no dads and no kids. We wear our pajamas, I provide something to eat, and we play games, make a craft and then pamper our hands. I have a waxer and I let them do a satin hands treatment and then wax their hands before they go home.

Also, I make a picture collage from the past year of their kids and write each child a letter that I put on the back of their collage. I give it to the moms as a gift. There is no faster way to a mom’s heart than caring for her AND her child.

I always have a theme for each mom’s night like one year we did Grease. We met at an old-fashioned diner for dinner, then came to my house where I had the movie playing quietly during game and craft time.

Another time I did a garden theme. The moms planted flowers in a pot, made stepping stones, and exchanged garden gifts they brought it a gift exchange game. They are really fun for me as well and I get to know the moms better.

There are so many different things you can do, but the important part is to do something to engage your parents in the program. If they aren’t interested, that is fine, but give them the chance to send snacks for the valentine party or supplies for a project, or let them come together to meet other families.

Parent involvement ideas that are simple

It doesn’t have to be a big event, it can be sending home a piece of paper and having the parents and child draw a picture together to display at daycare or even having parents send their favorite book for the day. Parent involvement is anything that helps kids and parents feel connected to their learning environment. 

Parent involvement activities are also things like sending a text to parents with a cute picture or sweet thought about their child. Letting them know you care. It can be asking a parent to come in and talk about something with the kids, like if your mom is a dental hygienist, she can come in and talk to the kids about brushing their teeth. Maybe you have a mom that does manicures, she can tell the kids about taking care of their hands. 

Importance of parental involvement

You can send home flyers that help parents, like a sheet about tax credits or how to save money on diapers. Another idea could be to bake cupcakes for the child’s birthday and send home enough for their family to each share one. You could put out coffee and muffins for parents one morning for fun. 

Hold an open house, do parent conferences, make up certificates for accomplishments the kids make and send them home, anything that connects families with what their kids are doing. Ohh, your mom is going to love that. Don’t get caught up in making in complicated or a ton of work for you, do what you like. It’s just about building a bridge between childcare and the families. 

It’s an important part of them feeling comfortable with your childcare.

Parent involvement in daycare

Parent involvement ideas

If you were a parent who had to leave your child to go to work, wouldn’t you want to KNOW that they were being well taken care of so you could focus on your job? I know when I had Kayla in childcare, I appreciated that so much!

A big part of success and getting parents involved is being approachable. Make sure you are available to your parents for their questions and concerns. Listen carefully to them when they are expressing their needs to you. They are trusting you with the most important thing in their life.

Give them your full attention. They may be asking for something you cannot do. Don’t be dishonest and say you will do it if you won’t. And don’t promise to do things that are going to make you miserable.

It’s your business and you need to be in charge of it. And remember it’s a business, not a friendship. Even if you are friends with some of your parents, you still need to be professional.

Try to think of a few simple things to get parent involvement in your daycare. You will be amazed at how it helps your business grow! For more help on success in family childcare , click on the highlighted link. For more Family Engagement Activities For Preschool , check this out.

Parent involvement activities for daycare help you bond with parents and build relationships! Quality care is important, but communication is too.

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Could you maybe use the word “families” instead of parents? Many children do not have parents as their guardians, or even at all.

Great subject and very appreciated! You just gave me some great ideas!

Thank you for checking it out. I hope you can find some things to use and don’t think they have to be all big things, do what works for you. 🙂

Wonderful tips! Thanks for linking up at the Thoughtful Spot Weekly Blog Hop! We hope you join us again next week!

I hope so, thanks for the opportunity!

Your ideas are amazing. Thank you! More, more, more!

Thank you so much! I’m glad they were helpful for you!

Thank you for contributing to Motivation Monday!

You’re so welcome, thank you for hosting it! 🙂

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Parental Involvement vs. Parental Engagement

A young boy of color sits between his two parents in a classroom, listening to his teacher talk.

Par­ents are vital in ensur­ing their children’s safe­ty, secu­ri­ty, and well-being as well as their edu­ca­tion­al success.

Parental involve­ment in school is key: In a  1994 meta-analy­sis of 66 stud­ies and oth­er pub­li­ca­tions, researchers found that fam­i­ly ​ “ makes crit­i­cal con­tri­bu­tions to stu­dent achieve­ment from the ear­li­est child­hood years through high school.” Efforts to improve chil­dren’s edu­ca­tion­al out­comes ​ “ are much more effec­tive when the fam­i­ly is active­ly involved,” the researchers con­clud­ed .

What Is the Dif­fer­ence Between Parental Involve­ment and Engagement?

What many may not know is that there is an impor­tant dif­fer­ence between parental involve­ment and parental engagement.

An involved par­ent takes part in the activ­i­ties already deter­mined by the school. An engaged par­ent takes a step fur­ther, often becom­ing part of the school’s deci­sion-mak­ing process.

Think of the two as com­pli­men­ta­ry actions, a kind of yin and yang that togeth­er pro­duce bet­ter out­comes for students.

Parental involve­ment may include class­room vol­un­teer­ing, chap­er­on­ing school events, par­tic­i­pat­ing in par­ent-teacher con­fer­ences and oth­er com­mu­ni­ca­tion with teach­ers. Edu­ca­tors large­ly con­trol these activ­i­ties, invit­ing par­ents to participate.

With engage­ment, schools inten­tion­al­ly give par­ents oppor­tu­ni­ties to offer their own input, devel­op on their own abil­i­ties and take own­er­ship over ideas. Effec­tive engage­ment can include train­ing for par­ents of chil­dren with spe­cial needs and involv­ing par­ents in key school-wide decisions.

It is dri­ven, fore­most, by par­ents’ needs as their children’s pri­ma­ry caregivers.

Long­time edu­ca­tor Lar­ry Fer­laz­zo has writ­ten that while par­ent involve­ment often involves one-way com­mu­ni­ca­tion, par­ent engage­ment involves two-way con­ver­sa­tions. These con­ver­sa­tions occur not just through more inten­tion­al com­mu­ni­ca­tion but through efforts like home vis­its and phone calls to par­ents in cri­sis or rou­tine check-ins ​ “ that don’t nec­es­sar­i­ly only hap­pen when there’s a prob­lem with a child.”

Down­load the Annie E. Casey Foun­da­tion’s Engag­ing Par­ents, Devel­op­ing Lead­ers report. This pub­li­ca­tion intro­duces an assess­ment and plan­ning tool to help non­prof­its eval­u­ate their par­ent engage­ment efforts and chart a path toward deep­er part­ner­ships with par­ents and caregivers.

Exam­ples of Par­ent Involve­ment vs. Engagement

Par­ents can become involved in their chil­dren’s edu­ca­tion by: 

  • attend­ing or vol­un­teer­ing at school functions;
  • dis­cussing school events;
  • help­ing out with home­work; and
  • read­ing with children;

Becom­ing more involved cre­ates a sup­port­ive learn­ing envi­ron­ment at home.

Schools can build engage­ment by:

  • involv­ing par­ents in school-wide deci­sion-mak­ing, from instruc­tion to nutrition;
  • devel­op­ing pro­gram­ming for par­ents that trains them in key areas such as dig­i­tal skills;
  • invit­ing par­ents in to learn more about how schools work and how they can meet their children’s needs;
  • ini­ti­at­ing ​ “ par­ent acad­e­mies” con­ceived and run by par­ents them­selves, focus­ing on con­cerns and needs that they iden­ti­fy; and
  • encour­ag­ing par­ents to see their school as an insti­tu­tion that is part of a neigh­bor­hood or larg­er community.

Fer­laz­zo, the edu­ca­tor, said it best when he wrote: ​ “ A school striv­ing for fam­i­ly involve­ment often leads with its mouth — iden­ti­fy­ing projects, needs and goals and then telling par­ents how they can con­tribute. A school striv­ing for par­ent engage­ment, on the oth­er hand, tends to lead with its ears — lis­ten­ing to what par­ents think, dream and wor­ry about. The goal of fam­i­ly engage­ment is not to serve clients but to gain partners.”

Parental Engage­ment and Parental Involve­ment Work Togeth­er for the Bet­ter Outcomes

Though parental engage­ment often pro­duces bet­ter out­comes than involve­ment alone, the best school pro­grams inter­act with par­ents in both ways. Ben­e­fits to stu­dents may include high­er grades and test scores, bet­ter atten­dance and behav­ior, increased enroll­ment in chal­leng­ing cours­es and improved social skills.

“ As teach­ers, we know that fam­i­lies must be crit­i­cal allies in cre­at­ing learn­ing com­mu­ni­ties where all chil­dren can achieve equi­table out­comes,” writes edu­ca­tor Ilene Carv­er . ​ “ We need to believe that all fam­i­lies sin­cere­ly care about their chil­dren and will do every­thing they can to sup­port them. If we, as teach­ers, reach out with respect, fam­i­ly mem­bers will get involved.”

Edu­ca­tors say that strong con­nec­tions between schools and fam­i­lies can help address impor­tant non-school fac­tors — such as health, safe­ty, and afford­able hous­ing — that account for about two-thirds of the vari­ance in stu­dent achieve­ment. These con­nec­tions can also improve par­ents’ ​ “ feel­ings of effi­ca­cy” at school and increase com­mu­ni­ty sup­port for schools themselves.

Par­ent engage­ment is ​ “ the ulti­mate goal of great schools,” accord­ing to the advo­ca­cy group Par­ents 4  Pub­lic Schools , ​ “ because it allows for not only the cre­ation of bet­ter par­ent-school part­ner­ships but also has a tremen­dous impact on stu­dent achievement.”

How Schools Can Encour­age Fam­i­ly Engagement

Schools must build rela­tion­ships, first and foremost.

One place to start? By ask­ing fam­i­lies how they want to be engaged, says Carv­er . This means ask­ing fam­i­lies ​ “ what days and times are con­ve­nient for them, and what the school could do to sup­port their involvement.”

Carv­er points to small dis­cus­sion groups or focus groups, host­ed either for­mal­ly or infor­mal­ly, as a means for gath­er­ing fam­i­ly per­spec­tives. ​ “ If fam­i­lies say that trans­porta­tion, child­care, or the need to pre­pare a meal before com­ing are bar­ri­ers, set up a ride net­work,” she writes, ​ “ invite the whole fam­i­ly, have activ­i­ties for younger chil­dren, and serve dinner.”

Schools should invite teach­ers, staff, fam­i­lies and com­mu­ni­ty mem­bers who can help view the envi­ron­ment ​ “ as a new vis­i­tor would see it,” says Carv­er. ​ “ How invit­ing is the entrance? Are there signs let­ting peo­ple know, in a friend­ly way, where to find what they’re look­ing for? What hap­pens when they go into the office? Can fam­i­lies eas­i­ly get their con­cerns addressed, ques­tions answered and prob­lems resolved?”

Putting stu­dent work in the spot­light draws fam­i­lies, Carv­er adds. ​ “ Ask teach­ers and par­ents to be ​ ‘ greeters’ and wel­come fam­i­lies as they come in. Offer inter­preters if Eng­lish is not their first lan­guage. Ask local musi­cians (many may be par­ents) to pro­vide music. And have fun!”

In areas strick­en with pover­ty and vio­lence, engage­ment is still pos­si­ble, accord­ing to edu­ca­tors. For exam­ple: In Sacra­men­to, Cal­i­for­nia, Par­ent Teacher Home Vis­its — a col­lab­o­ra­tion among an inter­faith orga­niz­ing group, the local school dis­trict and the teach­ers’ union — has result­ed in bet­ter stu­dent atten­dance, high­er grad­u­a­tion rates, more par­ent involve­ment and low­er teacher turnover, advo­cates say.

The Sacra­men­to pro­gram arose after par­ents com­plained that it was near­ly impos­si­ble to talk to teach­ers about their chil­dren. After the vis­its, advo­cates say, fam­i­lies are more com­fort­able com­ing to school.

More on Par­ent Engage­ment and Par­ent Involvement

  • Report: Engag­ing Par­ents, Devel­op­ing Leaders
  • Report: Parental Involve­ment in Education
  • Blog Post: Parental Involve­ment in Reading
  • Inter­ac­tive KIDS COUNT ® Data Book : Edu­ca­tion in the Unit­ed States

This post is related to:

  • Early Childhood
  • Health and Child Development

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  • About Adverse Childhood Experiences
  • Risk and Protective Factors
  • Program: Essentials for Childhood: Preventing Adverse Childhood Experiences through Data to Action
  • Adverse childhood experiences can have long-term impacts on health, opportunity and well-being.
  • Adverse childhood experiences are common and some groups experience them more than others.

diverse group of children lying on each other in a park

What are adverse childhood experiences?

Adverse childhood experiences, or ACEs, are potentially traumatic events that occur in childhood (0-17 years). Examples include: 1

  • Experiencing violence, abuse, or neglect.
  • Witnessing violence in the home or community.
  • Having a family member attempt or die by suicide.

Also included are aspects of the child’s environment that can undermine their sense of safety, stability, and bonding. Examples can include growing up in a household with: 1

  • Substance use problems.
  • Mental health problems.
  • Instability due to parental separation.
  • Instability due to household members being in jail or prison.

The examples above are not a complete list of adverse experiences. Many other traumatic experiences could impact health and well-being. This can include not having enough food to eat, experiencing homelessness or unstable housing, or experiencing discrimination. 2 3 4 5 6

Quick facts and stats

ACEs are common. About 64% of adults in the United States reported they had experienced at least one type of ACE before age 18. Nearly one in six (17.3%) adults reported they had experienced four or more types of ACEs. 7

Preventing ACEs could potentially reduce many health conditions. Estimates show up to 1.9 million heart disease cases and 21 million depression cases potentially could have been avoided by preventing ACEs. 1

Some people are at greater risk of experiencing one or more ACEs than others. While all children are at risk of ACEs, numerous studies show inequities in such experiences. These inequalities are linked to the historical, social, and economic environments in which some families live. 5 6 ACEs were highest among females, non-Hispanic American Indian or Alaska Native adults, and adults who are unemployed or unable to work. 7

ACEs are costly. ACEs-related health consequences cost an estimated economic burden of $748 billion annually in Bermuda, Canada, and the United States. 8

ACEs can have lasting effects on health and well-being in childhood and life opportunities well into adulthood. 9 Life opportunities include things like education and job potential. These experiences can increase the risks of injury, sexually transmitted infections, and involvement in sex trafficking. They can also increase risks for maternal and child health problems including teen pregnancy, pregnancy complications, and fetal death. Also included are a range of chronic diseases and leading causes of death, such as cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and suicide. 1 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17

ACEs and associated social determinants of health, such as living in under-resourced or racially segregated neighborhoods, can cause toxic stress. Toxic stress, or extended or prolonged stress, from ACEs can negatively affect children’s brain development, immune systems, and stress-response systems. These changes can affect children’s attention, decision-making, and learning. 18

Children growing up with toxic stress may have difficulty forming healthy and stable relationships. They may also have unstable work histories as adults and struggle with finances, jobs, and depression throughout life. 18 These effects can also be passed on to their own children. 19 20 21 Some children may face further exposure to toxic stress from historical and ongoing traumas. These historical and ongoing traumas refer to experiences of racial discrimination or the impacts of poverty resulting from limited educational and economic opportunities. 1 6

Adverse childhood experiences can be prevented. Certain factors may increase or decrease the risk of experiencing adverse childhood experiences.

Preventing adverse childhood experiences requires understanding and addressing the factors that put people at risk for or protect them from violence.

Creating safe, stable, nurturing relationships and environments for all children can prevent ACEs and help all children reach their full potential. We all have a role to play.

  • Merrick MT, Ford DC, Ports KA, et al. Vital Signs: Estimated Proportion of Adult Health Problems Attributable to Adverse Childhood Experiences and Implications for Prevention — 25 States, 2015–2017. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2019;68:999-1005. DOI: .
  • Cain KS, Meyer SC, Cummer E, Patel KK, Casacchia NJ, Montez K, Palakshappa D, Brown CL. Association of Food Insecurity with Mental Health Outcomes in Parents and Children. Science Direct. 2022; 22:7; 1105-1114. DOI: .
  • Smith-Grant J, Kilmer G, Brener N, Robin L, Underwood M. Risk Behaviors and Experiences Among Youth Experiencing Homelessness—Youth Risk Behavior Survey, 23 U.S. States and 11 Local School Districts. Journal of Community Health. 2022; 47: 324-333.
  • Experiencing discrimination: Early Childhood Adversity, Toxic Stress, and the Impacts of Racism on the Foundations of Health | Annual Review of Public Health .
  • Sedlak A, Mettenburg J, Basena M, et al. Fourth national incidence study of child abuse and neglect (NIS-4): Report to Congress. Executive Summary. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Health an Human Services, Administration for Children and Families.; 2010.
  • Font S, Maguire-Jack K. Pathways from childhood abuse and other adversities to adult health risks: The role of adult socioeconomic conditions. Child Abuse Negl. 2016;51:390-399.
  • Swedo EA, Aslam MV, Dahlberg LL, et al. Prevalence of Adverse Childhood Experiences Among U.S. Adults — Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, 2011–2020. MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep 2023;72:707–715. DOI: .
  • Bellis, MA, et al. Life Course Health Consequences and Associated Annual Costs of Adverse Childhood Experiences Across Europe and North America: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Lancet Public Health 2019.
  • Adverse Childhood Experiences During the COVID-19 Pandemic and Associations with Poor Mental Health and Suicidal Behaviors Among High School Students — Adolescent Behaviors and Experiences Survey, United States, January–June 2021 | MMWR
  • Hillis SD, Anda RF, Dube SR, Felitti VJ, Marchbanks PA, Marks JS. The association between adverse childhood experiences and adolescent pregnancy, long-term psychosocial consequences, and fetal death. Pediatrics. 2004 Feb;113(2):320-7.
  • Miller ES, Fleming O, Ekpe EE, Grobman WA, Heard-Garris N. Association Between Adverse Childhood Experiences and Adverse Pregnancy Outcomes. Obstetrics & Gynecology . 2021;138(5):770-776. .
  • Sulaiman S, Premji SS, Tavangar F, et al. Total Adverse Childhood Experiences and Preterm Birth: A Systematic Review. Matern Child Health J . 2021;25(10):1581-1594. .
  • Ciciolla L, Shreffler KM, Tiemeyer S. Maternal Childhood Adversity as a Risk for Perinatal Complications and NICU Hospitalization. Journal of Pediatric Psychology . 2021;46(7):801-813. .
  • Mersky JP, Lee CP. Adverse childhood experiences and poor birth outcomes in a diverse, low-income sample. BMC pregnancy and childbirth. 2019;19(1). .
  • Reid JA, Baglivio MT, Piquero AR, Greenwald MA, Epps N. No youth left behind to human trafficking: Exploring profiles of risk. American journal of orthopsychiatry. 2019;89(6):704.
  • Diamond-Welch B, Kosloski AE. Adverse childhood experiences and propensity to participate in the commercialized sex market. Child Abuse & Neglect. 2020 Jun 1;104:104468.
  • Shonkoff, J. P., Garner, A. S., Committee on Psychosocial Aspects of Child and Family Health, Committee on Early Childhood, Adoption, and Dependent Care, & Section on Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics (2012). The lifelong effects of early childhood adversity and toxic stress. Pediatrics, 129(1), e232–e246.
  • Narayan AJ, Kalstabakken AW, Labella MH, Nerenberg LS, Monn AR, Masten AS. Intergenerational continuity of adverse childhood experiences in homeless families: unpacking exposure to maltreatment versus family dysfunction. Am J Orthopsych. 2017;87(1):3. .
  • Schofield TJ, Donnellan MB, Merrick MT, Ports KA, Klevens J, Leeb R. Intergenerational continuity in adverse childhood experiences and rural community environments. Am J Public Health. 2018;108(9):1148-1152. .
  • Schofield TJ, Lee RD, Merrick MT. Safe, stable, nurturing relationships as a moderator of intergenerational continuity of child maltreatment: a meta-analysis. J Adolesc Health. 2013;53(4 Suppl):S32-38. .

Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs)

ACEs can have a tremendous impact on lifelong health and opportunity. CDC works to understand ACEs and prevent them.

'Bluey Day!' at Las Vegas restaurant descends into 'chaos,' leaves kids crying and parents furious

"Bluey Day" at a Dirt Dog restaurant in Las Vegas.

A Las Vegas restaurant apologized after its "Bluey Day!" promotion was poorly received by parents, who called out the eatery for long lines, half-hearted activities and an employee in a flimsy costume.

Operators of Dirt Dog restaurants sought to seize on the popularity of "Bluey" — a cartoon about a talking 6-year-old Blue Heel dog , brought to life on the Australian Broadcasting Corp . and Disney + — with a free "Bluey Day!" at one of its Sin City locations this month.

But Dirt Dog did not grasp the full scope of the popularity of "Bluey," as the event was quickly overwhelmed.

Social media posts about the May 11 event complained about a face painting station that shut down early, overpriced store-bought cupcakes and a "watch party" that consisted of a few TVs showing the cartoon on mute.

And while the restaurant promised that kids could "meet Bluey and friends," photos appeared to show a bearded man, apparently in a onesie, being passed off as the beloved pooch.

Here's just a sampling of the scathing comments from the restaurant's Facebook page :

  • "Anyone going to this today, don’t waste your time. It was completely chaos, the bluey isn’t even a costume.... it’s a dude in pajamas."
  • "This is not a true event for Bluey. Place is unsafe and overly packed and they just have some employees dressed in cheap Amazon Bluey Onsies. They are also selling their 'special treats' which look like big box store cupcakes for $3.50. Excuse to get more business by preying on the interests of small children and their families!"
  • "This event was EXTREMELY disappointing. False advertising at its finest. Bluey is a guy in a onesie. There are no friends of Bluey. Bluey watch party? On mute?!?!?"
  • "Dirt Dog made a huge mistake today. Maybe they didn’t realize what a following Bluey had, but the amount of people who were 'going' and 'interested' in the event should have clued them in. We were there at the very start of event at 11. It was already crowded and couldn’t get past the 'hostess' area. The face painting line went to the back of the restaurant."
  • “Temu Bluey costume and decorations from Dollar Tree featured at Dirt Dog Las Vegas Rainbow! Thanks for ruining my 3 year olds day.”

And mom Stephanie Hernandez told KVUU -TV of Las Vegas that children were left in tears.

“The kids were distraught. Some kids were crying. Some kids were upset, crying in their parents’ shoulders,” she said. “How could you do that to little kids? It was a very upsetting moment to see so many kids, especially my daughter, just really upset."

A staffer told KVUU that the restaurant was expecting a handful of kids and parents but that hundreds showed up.

"The whole city coming out, and that's what we got, the entire city," staffer Taj Wilder said . "Now knowing who Bluey is, we would have planned ahead and would have had security there, there would have been more door regulations."

The gourm e t hot dog re staurant apologized and said it appreciated the "feedback."

“We are truly sorry this event wasn’t the expected experience,” Dirt Dog wrote. “We were overwhelmed with the turn out to this event. We will continue to improve on our events so we can ensure nothing like this will happen in the future.”

A representative for Disney+ could not immediately be reached for comment Tuesday.

The promotion's failure drew comparisons to the Willy Wonka-inspired “Chocolate Experience” in Scotland this year, which set the gold standard for bad family and children's events.

The Willy Wonka flub has even inspired memes to convey a completely underwhelming experience and a disastrous event.

parent involvement assignments

David K. Li is a senior breaking news reporter for NBC News Digital.


  1. Parental Involvement in Education

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  2. Parent Involvement Matters

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  3. Parent Involvement In Education Questionnaire

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  4. Parent involvement activities for daycare help you bond with parents

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  5. Sample: School Parent Involvement Policy/Procedure

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  6. Parent Involvement Ideas

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  1. Parent Involvement: Establishing Strong Home-School Connections from Start of Classes

  2. Parent involvement is crucial to a child’s success

  3. DDSB Parent Involvement Committee (PIC) Meeting


  5. Parent Involvement Training

  6. 5 benefits of parent engagement for APSs


  1. Family Engagement Activities

    Project Appleseed offers the Parental Involvement Report Card as a self-assessment tool to help parents evaluate their involvement in their child's education. The report card, consisting of 30 questions, can serve as a guide for parents to identify ways they can support their child both at home and at school.

  2. PDF 68 Parent Involvement Ideas That Really Work

    build involvement and support. 68. Want to get parents out for school meetings? Make children welcome by offering child care. —These ideas from a presentation by John H. Wherry, Ed.D., President, The Parent Institute, P.O. Box 7474, Fairfax Station, VA 22039-7474. The Parent Institute publishes the Educators'

  3. 24 Activities to Get Families Involved in Schools

    National Parent Involvement Day is on the third Thursday of November and is a great time to plan some spectacular activities for families and students to engage in together. Remember to build strong, trusting relationships with families first, then increase family engagement with relevant, accessible, and fun activities.

  4. Family Engagement: Resource Roundup

    New Teachers: Working With Parents: Find ideas to help teachers engage and build trust with families. (Edutopia, 2016) The Beginners' Guide to Connecting Home and School: Discover five steps to engage parents, whether through at-home activities or in-class participation. (Edutopia, 2014) Five-Minute Film Festival: Parent-Teacher Partnerships: Watch this video playlist on parent engagement for ...

  5. Getting Parents Involved in Schools

    The benefits for students are proven: A recent review of parent involvement research found that parent-child reading activities produce a significant improvement in children's language and reading skills from preschool through high school (Sheldon & Epstein, 2005); another study finds a strong positive effect on student achievement when ...

  6. How Parent Involvement Leads to Student Success

    The importance of family involvement in education is clear, and the benefits profound. In a retrospective looking at 50 different studies, researchers found strong connections between family involvement and academic achievement. [1] Support and involvement from educators and families are crucial to a student's academic performance.

  7. Promoting Family Involvement

    The parental involvement goal explicitly states, "Parents and families will help to ensure that schools are adequately supported and will hold schools and teachers to high standards of accountability." ... White, V. (1994). Unpublished material from survey of state legislative activities on parental involvement. Denver: National Conference ...

  8. Understanding the Power of Parent Involvement

    HIPPY Americorps Evaluation: Parental involvement in literacy activities and volunteer activities in the community in California, Florida and Hawaii.University of South Florida, Department of Child and Family Studies. Audience: Administrator (director or principal), Teacher. Age: Early Primary, Infant/Toddler, Kindergarten, Preschool.

  9. Family engagement and student success: What the research says

    Of all the factors that determine student outcomes, family engagement is at the top of the list. Partnerships between schools and families can improve students' grades, attendance, persistence, and motivation. Research shows that this is true regardless of a family's race or income. Although some families proactively engage in their child ...

  10. Parental Involvement in Your Child's Education

    Parental involve­ment is the active, ongo­ing par­tic­i­pa­tion of a par­ent or pri­ma­ry care­giv­er in the edu­ca­tion of a child. Par­ents can demon­strate involve­ment at home by: read­ing with children; help­ing with homework; dis­cussing school events; attend­ing school func­tions, includ­ing par­ent-teacher meet ...

  11. Involving Parents in Schools

    Parent Involvement. Parent involvement is a multidimensional broad term that refers to parental attitudes, expectations, and behaviors related to their child's academic achievement such as communicating with the school or helping a child with schoolwork in the home (Grolnick & Slowiaczek, 1994; Sawyer, 2015).Parent involvement activities vary based on levels of frequency, effort, and the ...

  12. Improving Parent Engagement at the High School Level

    Improving Parent Engagement at the High School Level. It's possible to improve communication with parents and guardians of high school students by rethinking a few outreach strategies. By Andrew Fultz. February 9, 2022. SDI Productions / iStock. Educators understand the importance of parental involvement in a student's life.

  13. The Importance of Parental Involvement in Education

    Parent involvement in schools can include discussions after school, helping with homework assignments, engaging in extracurricular activities, keeping abreast of academic progress, imparting parental values, participating in parent meetings, attending school activities, and volunteering in the classroom.

  14. How Parent Involvement Benefits Kids

    For one, parent involvement in education fosters kids' self-esteem. Children with involved parents also have enhanced skills for regulating emotions and feel negative emotions less often. All in all, when parents choose to become involved with their kid's schoolwork, kids benefit not only in the classroom but far beyond it. 7 Sources.

  15. Does Parent Involvement Really Help Students? Here's What the Research Says

    1. Studies show more parental involvement leads to improved academic outcomes. When parents are involved in their children's schooling, students show higher academic achievement, school ...

  16. Parental Involvement in Education & Schools: Benefits and Strategies

    But first, here are a few reasons parental involvement is important. 1. Parent Involvement Leads to Reduced Absenteeism. Research shows that parental involvement encourages children to attend school regularly. ... You can share details on upcoming activities or homework assignments that the parent can get involved in.

  17. Parent Involvement Activities for Daycare

    Parent involvement activities are also things like sending a text to parents with a cute picture or sweet thought about their child. Letting them know you care. It can be asking a parent to come in and talk about something with the kids, like if your mom is a dental hygienist, she can come in and talk to the kids about brushing their teeth.

  18. Why Do Parents Become Involved? Research Findings and Implications

    Abstract A decade ago, Hoover‐Dempsey and Sandler offered a model of the parental involvement process that focused on understanding why parents become involved in their children's education and how their involvement influences student outcomes. Since then, we and others have conducted conceptual and empirical work to enhance understanding of processes examined in the model. In this article ...

  19. Full article: Parental involvement and educational success among

    So too, as children develop into more autonomous adolescents and young adults, this form of parental involvement may become less effective, and more subtle ways of parental engagement may be required (Jeynes Citation 2014). Moreover, research indicates that the effect of parental involvement in homework activities is ambiguous.

  20. The Role of Parental Involvement in Narrowing the Academic Achievement

    The involvement of a parent or guardian in a child's education is a strong predictor of student academic outcomes (Fan & Chen, 2001; Hill & Tyson, 2009; Jeynes, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2012; Patall et al., 2008).Yet, there are different conceptualizations of what comprises parental involvement in education, such as school-based involvement like attending school activities, home-based involvement ...

  21. Parental Involvement vs. Parental Engagement

    Parental Involvement vs. Parental Engagement. Par­ents are vital in ensur­ing their children's safe­ty, secu­ri­ty, and well-being as well as their edu­ca­tion­al success. Parental involve­ment in school is key: In a 1994 meta-analy­sis of 66 stud­ies and oth­er pub­li­ca­tions, researchers found that fam­i­ly " makes crit ...

  22. About Adverse Childhood Experiences

    Outcomes. ACEs can have lasting effects on health and well-being in childhood and life opportunities well into adulthood. 9 Life opportunities include things like education and job potential. These experiences can increase the risks of injury, sexually transmitted infections, and involvement in sex trafficking.

  23. 'Bluey Day!' at Las Vegas restaurant descends into 'chaos,' leaves kids

    A Las Vegas restaurant apologized after its "Bluey Day!" promotion was poorly received by parents, who called out the eatery for long lines, half-hearted activities and an employee in a flimsy ...

  24. From Foxconn to Microsoft, coal to clean energy: Gale Klappa

    Gale Klappa retired this month from day-to-day leadership at WEC Energy Group, but remains involved in the Milwaukee 7 economic development group and other activities. He shared his perspectives ...