Resource Library: Family Engagement

National TA&D Agencies and Research Institute Links

Website Links to Regional & National OSEP-Funded Parent Centers

CADRE Webinar ~ Moving Forward: Building Effective Family-School Partnerships with Karen Mapp, Director, Education Policy and Management Program, Harvard Graduate School of Education. This webinar provided an overview of what we now know about policies and practices needed to cultivate and sustain effective family-school partnerships that support student achievement and school improvement

Center on Innovation and Improvement Website: Families-Schools - Resources for Families & Schools to Improve School Communities

Advancing Parent-Professional Relationship: Effective Strategies for Building the Capacity of Parent Advisory Councils in Special Education The Institute Brief, No. 27, May 2009] Describes the effective strategies that Special Education Parent Advisory Councils (SEPACs) & other parent groups can use to improve their organizational capacity to more effectively collaborate with educators. Developed by Institute for Community Inclusion.

National PIRC Coordination Center

Website: Harvard Family Research Project

SPDG Projects and Parent Training and Information Center Survey Summary 2011 (PDF). This is a summary of the survey responses received from SPDG project Directors regarding the collaboration with PTIs.

Organizational Culture

National Center for Cultural Competence

Bridging the Cultural Divide in Health Care Settings: The Essential role of Cultural Broker Programs


State Resources

Louisiana SPDG Partnering with People First of Louisiana. The following resources created by People First and in collaboration with People First of Louisiana will be shared (People First Pledge, Webinars, tools for schools, etc.).

People First Chart (PDF, 2012) – examples of People First Language
People First Pledge (PDF, 2012) - is a pledge to use People First Language
Donna Spear Speaker Spotlight (PDF, 2012) – is a People First Mentor story.
Wallace Johnson (PDF, 2012) - is a People First Mentor story.
PF Brochure (PDF, 2012) – is a brochure from the Louisiana People First Organization.

Arkansas Parent Literacy Training PowerPoint [PPT] and Script [PDF]. Based on research in literacy, this PowerPoint is used as part of a one-hour presentation for parents and parent educators to help them understand the five areas of literacy, the different literacy skills that emerge for students at different developmental stages (from preschool through late elementary school), and what activities they can do at home to support and reinforce these skills with their children. This PowerPoint is used to train the Parent Mentors, who have children of their own with a disability and who have made a commitment, through the SIG, to work with similar parents in their schools and/or districts. After training, these Parent Mentors use this same PowerPoint in their own trainings, ensuring that the content of the trainings will be consistent across Arkansas in all schools and districts. For more information contact Dr. Howard M. Knoff via email at Howard.Knoff@arkansas.gov or visit the SIG website: www.arstateimprovementgrant.com

Arkansas Parents Stop & Think: Positive Home Discipline and Social Skills [PPT] and Script [PDF]
In order to help parents understand how they can support their children’s behavior and self-management skills in a positive and productive way, this PowerPoint is used as part of a one-hour workshop for parents and parent educators to help them learn how to use the three components of effective discipline (Skills, Accountability, and Consistency), and how to teach their children social skills using the how to Stop and Think Parenting Book: A Guide to Children’s Good Behavior and its 75 minute DVD, Teaching Children to Stop and Think at Home: A Parent’s Guide to Teaching Good Behavior. This book and DVD were distributed at no cost to the Parent Centers in every state-funded preschool and elementary school in the state through the school’s state-mandated Parent Outreach Coordinator. For more information contact Dr. Howard M. Knoff [Howard.Knoff@arkansas.gov] or visit the SIG website: www.arstateimprovementgrant.com

Parent Teach Home Visit Project  This 13-minute video demonstrates how to engage in home visits so that intentional relationships can be built. Parent Teach Home VIsit Project is is an inexpensive and easily replicated model of family engagement that has been proven to end the cycle of blame between families and school staff by building trust and respect, instilling cultural competency and increasing personal and professional capacity for all involved. (Sacramento, CA)

Iowa – Survey of Parent’s Secondary Transition Needs [DOC]
In an effort to find effective ways to support parents with the transition of their children,
ASK Resource Center (Iowa’s PTI) in collaboration with the Iowa Department of Education, is attempting to change approaches to this issue by using a skills based approach.  This approach is based on the perspectives of parents telling the system what they need, rather than the predominant model of the system assuming what parents need to know.  Using a growing body of evidence regarding the importance of parent expectations, this survey was developed (in collaboration with the University of Minnesota) and used to interview parents statewide. 

LaSIG Family Facilitator Framework of Core Competencies [Louisiana SPDG] This is a draft version of Family Facilitator Core Competencies, which were designed to specify the basic skills & knowledge base required for the role of LaSIG Family Facilitator. These competencies are intended to build the knowledge & skills of Family Facilitators to facilitate meaningful family, school & community engagement.

Louisiana – LA SIG Notes on Parent and Child Time (PACT) Professional Development for Families [PDF]
PACT (Parent And Child Time) is a strategy used by schools to provide parents the
opportunity to learn and practice teaching techniques for use during home learning. Each
session is divided into three parts: a brief workshop, a practice period with their child, and
a debriefing period. Typically, the total time for the PACT session is from 1 to 2 hours.

Louisiana Indicators of Family Engagement – Survey for FAMILIES [PDF]
Louisiana Indicators of Family Engagement – Survey for SCHOOLS [PDF]
Louisiana Indicators of Family Engagement – Survey for STUDENTS [PDF]

These surveys are designed to determine a schools’ level of engagement with families and is
intended for use by schools to determine if they have the necessary structures in place to
ensure meaningful family engagement. The surveys are being piloted this year by the LASIG project.

Massachussetts- Advancing Parent-Professional Leadership in Education (A.P.P.L.E.) Project Flyer [PDF, ICI, UMASS Boston, February 2008] This one-page flyer describes the preliminary findings from a model parent-professional demonstration project.

Massachussetts - Advancing Parent-Professional Leadership in Education (A.P.P.L.E.) Presentation [PPT, ICI ,UMASS Boston, July 2008] OSEP Project Directors' Conference presentation describing the Advanced Parent-Professional Leadership in Education model demonstration project & its preliminary findings.

Massachussetts -Advancing Parent-Professional Leadership in Education (A.P.P.L.E.) Example Post-Course Survey [PDF, ICI, UMASS Spring 2009] Includes: course evaluation items, post-test items on course content & general participant feedback items.

New Hampshire Family Guide to Response to Intervention (English, PDF)
New Hampshire Family Guide to Response to Intervention (Spanish, PDF, 2011)
This was originally created under NH's SIG II grant. In 2011, the booklet was translated into Spanish for posting on our website and dissemination in our communities as an activity under our current SPDG.

Nebraska’sParent Resource Website for schools.

New Mexico Website - Parents Reaching Out

Ohio Department of Education - Virtual Tour of a Family Friendly Partnership School (CD)

Pennsylvania Training & Technical Assistance Network (PaTTAN ) Resources for Pennsylvania educators & parents.

Tennessee's Families Helping Children Become Better Readers: A Literacy Resource Kit for Parents (Tennessee SIG, 2007)

Tennessee - Support & Training for Exceptional Parents (STEP) STEP is a statewide family-to-family program in Tennessee, established in 1989 by a grant from the U.S. Department of Education. The purpose of STEP is to support families by providing free information, advocacy training, and support services to parents of children eligible to receive special education services under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) who reside in Tennessee.

SIGnetwork Presentations

Partnering with the State Personnel Development Grant: Enhancing Collaborative Relationships Between Families and Schools In Connecticut. (PPT, 12/2010). Nancy Prescott, Executive Director, Connecticut Parent Advocacy Center

Working with PTIs & CPRCs [PPT, August 26, 2010, Coffey, J., SPDG Program Area Lead]

Engaging Families, Parents & Communities [PPT, August 2010, Bailey-Anderson, S., Montana SPDG Director; Calder, J., Program Coordinator, Montana Parent Information & Resource Center (MT PIRC)]

Solid Foundation Solid Foundation is an evidence-based planning process to access where you are, to plan & implement in a two year cycle. Parents are part of the solution for improved student learning. The MT PIRC is currently using this. It’s a web-based tool. School improvement plan, surveys, are entered & scored to assess strengths & needs. The Solid Foundation provides the framework, agendas, & tools, but is not prescriptive so school buildings can customize it. Connect with your PIRC to learn more about it.

2010 OSEP Mega Conference - Parent Strand Presentation on State Personnel Development Grants (SPDG) [PPT, S1-206, August 2010, Presenters: Coffey, J., RTP, OSEP; Prescott, N., Executive Director, CT Parent Advocacy Center (CPAC); Robison, R., Executive Director, Federation for Children with Special Needs, MA; Salzer, C., Executive Co-Director, Region 4 PTAC at WIFACETS]] This describes how parent centers are expanding their collaborations with their SEAs to be more involved in the SPDG.

Parents as Collaborators: Wisconsin State Personnel Development Grant [PPT, Session Recording, April 2010, Bober, P., Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction & Courtney Salzer, Co-Director, Parent Training & Information Center (PTIC)]

Reaching Culturally & Linguistically Diverse Families & Other Hard to Reach Audiences Through Technology & Partnerships & Parent Centers [Session Recording, PPT, Autin, D., Co-Director, NE-PACT/Region 1 PTAC at Statewide Parent Advocacy Network of New Jersey, September 2009] An overview of easy-to-use, inexpensive technology tools including tools to ensure that families with different cultural & linguistic backgrounds can participate in technology-based opportunities. Beth Schaffner presented on Colorado’s Families as Faculty Project for improving home-school communication.

Colorado Families as Faculty Project: Improving Home-School Communication [PPT, September 2009, Schaffner, B., Director of Special Projects, PEAK Parent Center] Presentation on Colorado’s Families as Faculty Project for improving home-school communication.

Family Engagement and Response to Intervention (RTI) 

New Hampshire Family Guide to Response to Intervention (English, PDF, 2011), New Hampshire Family Guide to Response to Intervention (Spanish, PDF, 2011) This was originally created under NH's SIG II grant. In 2011, the booklet was translated into Spanish for posting on their website and dissemination in communities as an activity under their current SPDG.

RTI and Family Engagement: A Construct for Intentionality (PPT, 4/2011). Debra Jennings, Executive Co-Director of Statewide Parent Advocacy Network, an OSEP-funded Parent Program TA Center, provided strategies and best practices as part of a framework for family engagement in RTI.

Parent Involvement and Student Achivement. [PDF, 1997, San Diego County Office of Education]

Essential Components of RTI – A Closer Look at Response to Intervention. [PDF, 4/2010] National Center on Response to Intervention

Family Engagement and PBIS

Aligning and Integrating Family Engagement in Positive Behavioral Interventions and Supports: Concepts and Strategies for Families and Schools in Key Contexts. This e-book,  published by the OSEP-funded Positive Behavioral Interventions & Supports (PBIS) Center, provides clear guidance for increasing family engagement in schools in the context of PBIS and multi-tiered systems of support.  The e-book describes how to promote family engagement across student developmental levels from pre-K through high school, and addresses the unique needs of students at risk while emphasizing the critical theme of cultural competence. Voices of family members are prominent throughout the e-book, with family members providing ideas and guidance on each chapter.