The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF) is partnering with the White House to discuss transformative family engagement as a major contributor to a child’s school readiness and success. Transformative family engagement is a shared responsibility of families, schools, and communities aimed at helping students learn and achieve. The White House recently held a first-of-its-kind Symposium on Transformative Family Engagement convening philanthropic, research, and federal partners for a dialogue on opportunities and pathways for empowering parents as leaders and key decision makers in education.
WKKF’s Vice-President for Program Strategy Carla Thompson says, “Parents and caregivers are the strongest voices for their children and deserve a say in the decisions that affect their success.” In April 2014, the Kellogg Foundation announced the recipients of a $13.7 million investment to empower parents as leaders and key decision makers. Thirty organizations were selected to use these funds to develop and implement transformative family engagement programs in the field of early childhood education.
The White House Symposium on Transformative Family Engagement coincided with the recent release of a public opinion poll, commissioned by the Kellogg Foundation, of 1,000 parents nationwide. The poll found that 96% of parents believe they play a role in ensuring their child has a quality education, but that teachers (73%), principals (58%), and local officials (46%) also have meaningful roles. Other findings from the poll include:
- Forty-two percent of parents believe that involvement in their child’s education is most critical between birth and pre-school.
- The majority of parents (82%) say they are actively involved in their children’s education. However, ten percent of all parents say that they do not feel welcome to participate.
- Forty-six percent of parents report that lack of time is an obstacle preventing them from fully engaging in their child’s education.
- One in five parents report that a lack of understanding of what their child is learning is also a significant barrier to involvement.
Transform Consulting Group recognizes the importance of family engagement in student learning and building strong school-community-family partnerships. Contact us today to help your organization or school align with the latest research and best practices for children and families.