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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Parental Involvement Reaps Big Benefits

The National PTA shares findings about the benefits of involving parents in education.
By Edutopia
Edutopia Team

Parent involvement isn't a luxury -- it's an integral component of student achievement and school reform. Decades of research studies on the effect of meaningful parent involvement programs in schools have found that

  • when parents are involved, students achieve more, regardless of socioeconomic status, ethnic/racial background, or the parents' education level.
  • when parents are involved, students exhibit more positive attitudes and behavior.
  • to have long-lasting gains for students, parent involvement activities must be well planned, inclusive, and comprehensive.
  • children from diverse cultural backgrounds tend to do better when parents and professionals collaborate to bridge the gap between the culture at home and the learning institution.
  • schools that work well with families have better teacher morale and higher ratings of teachers by parents.
  • school programs that involve parents outperform identical programs without parent and family involvement.
  • effective programs are led by a team of administrators, educators, and parents and have access to financial resources.
  • when they are treated as partners and given relevant information by people with whom they are comfortable, parents put into practice the involvement strategies they already know are effective but have been hesitant to contribute.
  • collaboration with families is an essential component of a reform strategy, but it is not a substitute for high-quality education programs or comprehensive school improvement.

Research findings courtesy of the National PTA. Go to the National PTA's Web site for more information about parent involvement

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