E1. Title I, Part A: Parent And Caregiver Engagement Policy
Title I, Part A: Parent And Caregiver Engagement Policy
Policy Code: E1
First Reading: June 20, 2017
Second Reading: August 15, 2017
Adopted: August 15, 2017
Revised: December 7, 2021
It is the policy of the Essex Westford School District (LEA) to conduct outreach to all parents, caregivers and family members in order to plan and implement Title I programs, activities, and procedures for the
involvement of parents and family members in Title I programs. Parents/caregivers shall be informed of their right to be involved in the development of the LEA’s policy, the School-level procedure and the school-parent compact. In cooperation with parents/caregivers, the policy, procedure, plan and compact will be reviewed annually and updated periodically as determined necessary, to meet the changing needs of parents/caregivers and the schools, and distributed to parents/caregivers of participating students in an
understandable and uniform format and to the extent practicable, in a language the parents/caregivers can understand.
Recognizing that parent, and caregiver involvement and engagement is vital to achieve maximum
educational growth for students participating in Essex Westford’s Title I program and in compliance with federal law, the LEA shall develop jointly with, agree on with, and distribute to parents, caregivers and family members of participating Title I children, the following three items:
POLICY - LEA parent and caregiver engagement policy, ensuring that each Title I participating school will develop jointly with, agree on with, and distribute to, parents and family members of participating Title I children a written school-level parent, caregiver and family engagement procedure;
PROCEDURE- School-level parent, caregiver and family engagement procedure for each Title I served school, developed jointly with parents for all children served under Title I, including but not limited to a school-parent compact;
2(a). SCHOOL-PARENT COMPACT - outlines how parents, caregivers, the entire school staff, and students will share the responsibility for improved student academic achievement.
- Local Education Agency: for purposes of this policy, a supervisory union or supervisory district is the local education agency (LEA).
- Parent or Caregiver: Includes a legal guardian or other person standing in loco parentis (such as a grandparent or stepparent with whom the child lives, or a person who is legally responsible for the child’s welfare).
- Parent and Family Engagement (PFE): The inclusion of parents, families, schools and communities in order to support learning and improve schools. Opportunities for the informed participation of parents and family members, including those who have limited English proficiency, those who have disabilities, and those of migratory children.
- School-Parent Compact: outlines how parents, the entire school staff, and students will share the responsibility for improved student academic achievement and the means by which the school and parents will build and develop a partnership to help children achieve the State's high standards.
In carrying out the parent, caregiver and family engagement requirements, LEAs and schools, to the extent practicable, shall provide opportunities for the informed participation of parents, caregivers and family members (including parents, caregivers and family members who have limited English proficiency, parents and family members with disabilities, and parents and family members of migratory children), including providing information and school reports in a format and, to the extent practicable, in a language parents understand.
Building Capacity for Involvement
To ensure effective involvement of parents/family and to support a partnership among the schools involved, parents, and the community, each school and LEA s hall:
- provide assistance to parents and caregivers of children served by the school or local educational agency, as appropriate, in understanding topics such as the challenging State academic standards, State and local academic assessments, the requirements of this part, and how to monitor a child's progress and work with educators to improve the achievement of their children;
- provide materials and training to help parents and caregivers to work with their children to improve their children's achievement, such as literacy training and using technology (including education about the harms of copyright piracy), as appropriate, to foster parental and caregiver involvement;
- educate teachers, specialized instructional support personnel, principals, and other school leaders, and other staff, with the assistance of parents and caregivers, in the value and utility of contributions of
parents and caregivers, and in how to reach out to, communicate with, and work with parents and caregivers as equal partners, implement and coordinate parent/caregiver programs, and build ties between parents, caregivers and the school;
- to the extent feasible and appropriate, coordinate and integrate parent and caregiver involvement programs and activities with other Federal, State, and local programs, including public preschool programs, and conduct other activities, such as parent resource centers, that encourage and support parents and caregivers in more fully participating in the education of their children;
- ensure that information related to school and parent/caregiver programs, meetings, and other activities is sent to the parents of participating children in a format and, to the extent practicable, in a
language the parents/caregivers can understand; and
- provide other reasonable support for parental/caregiver involvement activities under this section, as parents/caregivers may request.
In addition, each school and LEA may:
- involve parents/caregivers in the development of training for teachers, principals, and other educators to improve the effectiveness of training;
- provide necessary literacy training from funds received under this part if the local educational agency has exhausted all other reasonably available sources of funding for training;
- pay reasonable and necessary expenses associated with local parental/caregiver involvement activities, including transportation and child care costs, to enable parents/caregivers to participate in school-related meetings and training sessions;
- train parents to enhance the involvement of other parents and caregivers;
- arrange school meetings at a variety of times, or conduct in-home conferences between teachers or other educators, who work directly with participating children, with parents/caregivers who are unable to attend conferences at school, in order to maximize parental/caregiver involvement and participation;
- adopt and implement model approaches to improving parental/caregiver involvement;
- establish a district-wide parent advisory council to provide advice on all matters related to parental/caregiver involvement in programs supported under this section;
- develop appropriate roles for community-based organizations and businesses in parent/caregiver involvement activities
1. LEA PARENT AND FAMILY ENGAGEMENT POLICY
The LEA parent, caregiver and family engagement policy shall be developed jointly, agreed on with, and distributed to parents/family of participating students. This policy shall be incorporated into the LEA’s plan and establish the LEA’s expectations and objectives for meaningful parent and family involvement. The Essex Westford SU/SD will:
- involve parents and family members in jointly developing the LEA plan, and the development of support and improvement plans by ensuring timely communication and a process to engage in the
development of the plan;
- provide the coordination, technical assistance, and other support necessary to assist and build the capacity of all participating schools within the local educational agency in planning and implementing effective parent, caregiver and family involvement activities to improve student academic achievement and school performance, which may include meaningful consultation with employers, business leaders, and philanthropic organizations, or individuals with expertise in effectively engaging parents and family members in education by ensuring access to to these consultation services;
- coordinate and integrate parent, caregiver and family engagement strategies under this part with parent and family engagement strategies, to the extent feasible and appropriate, with other relevant
Federal, State, and local laws and programs by ensuring coordination across schools and the Essex Westford SD;
- conduct, with the meaningful involvement of parents, caregivers and family members, an annual evaluation of the content and effectiveness of the parent, caregiver and family engagement policy in improving the academic quality of all schools served under this part. This annual evaluation identifies:
- barriers to greater participation by parents/caregivers in activities authorized by this section (with particular attention to parents who are economically disadvantaged, are disabled, have limited English proficiency, have limited literacy, or are of any racial or ethnic minority background);
- the needs of parents, caregivers and family members to assist with the learning of their children, including engaging with school personnel and teachers as partners; and
- strategies to support successful school and family interactions;
- use the findings of the evaluation in order to design evidence-based strategies for more effective parental involvement, and to revise, if necessary, the parent and family engagement policies described in this section; and
- involve parents/caregivers in the activities of the schools served under Title 1, which may include establishing a parent/caregiver advisory board comprised of a sufficient number and representative group of parents or family members served by the local educational agency to adequately represent the needs of the population served by the LEA for the purposes of developing, revising, and reviewing the parent and family engagement policy.
The LEA will follow “Use of Funds (LEA Parent and Family Engagement Policy)” statutory guidelines found in ESSA 1116.
Special Rule: If the school has a parent and family engagement policy that applies to all parents and family members, the school may amend that policy, if necessary, to meet the requirements of this subsection.
Amendment: If the LEA involved has a school district-level parent and family engagement policy that applies to all parents and family members in all schools served by the LEA, the LEA may amend that policy, if necessary, to meet the requirements of this subsection.