Written on: December 16th, 2010 in Education
This week, we held final 2010 Conversations About Stronger Schools meeting with parents, teachers, and other community leaders. I was really impressed by how engaged many of the parents have been – bringing challenging and thought-provoking questions.
“How will education reform work without increased involvement from parents? How can we get more parents involved?”
Parental involvement is fundamental to student success. Kids are only in school for so many hours a day, and most students spend most of their time outside of a classroom. Parental involvement and community support are critical to making sure that kids are ready to learn when they arrive at school and that they learn the skills and values that will help them to succeed when they leave school.
That is why part of our reform agenda requires districts to develop and implement family and community engagement plans using a portion of the Race to the Top funding. At the state level, we are working with the districts to identify and share best practices in this area, but these plans will be locally developed and driven.
We need all the creative and common-sense ideas we can get. Please get in touch with your local PTA or visit Ideas.Delaware.gov to share your suggestions.
Another significant element of our education reform plan is the improved collection and use of data. Teachers, school leaders and parents need real feedback in real time to determine how our students are doing, so we are building systems to make that possible.
This will eventually include a new Parent Dashboard that will enable parents to go online at anytime and see critical measures and data regarding their children’s progress. The “Insight Portal” will pilot in Fall 2011, starting with dashboards for teachers, and the Parent Dashboards should become available in the 2011-2012 school year.
Please help us get the word out about education reform and share your ideas and questions at Ideas.Delaware.gov!