News Update

Tapping into family engagement can boost literacy and math, experts say

Family engagement may be key to student academic success, as K-12 Dive reported. 

A strong connection between school and family leads to higher grades, test scores, attendance and graduation rates, said Karen Mapp, a senior lecturer on education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education during the U.S. Department of Education’s first online panel discussion in its Family Engagement Learning Series.

“Family engagement is not a new concept,” Mapp said, as K-12 reported. “It is an essential ingredient to the success of our students in our schools, but we still are battling a little bit to try to get people to accept this and realize this.”

The Education Department’s series, launched in partnership with the Carnegie Corporation of New York and the Overdeck Family Foundation, aims “to boost family engagement and lift parent voices,” the department said in a statement. The online series comes several months after the Education Department disbanded its newly formed National Parents and Families Engagement Council. The council’s dissolution followed the filing of a lawsuit by a group of conservative activists who claimed the effort lacked “balanced” perspectives. 

A parent’s relationship with their child is “the most underutilized natural resource in education,” said Alejandro Gibes de Gac, CEO and founder of the nonprofit Springboard Collaborative, during the session.