In a fast and busy world it is getting more and more difficult to spend any time, let along quality time with our children. And education seems to be taking the biggest hit because of it. With fewer parents involved with their child’s education, few children are excelling in the classroom. Every adult that has a child needs to understand the importance of parent involvement. The affects of parent involvement extend far beyond the walls of the classroom.
Knowledge is Power
Research has proven that most school aged children spend almost seventy percent of their time outside of school. That’s a large amount of time spent in unsupervised activities. Do you know where or what your child is doing during those hours? Are you actively involved in their activities; their life? The earlier you get involved with your child’s life them better and more powerful the effects are. Understanding how important you are in the life of your child and their success is vital to their survival. The most powerful and effective forms of parent involvement are things that engage parents in working directly with their child on learning activities at home. Here are some statistics to show you the importance of parent involvement:
•Lack of parent involvement is one of the biggest problems facing the public school system today.
•Parent involvement has helped students increase test scores and graduation rates.
•Parent involvement has increased the number of children attending schools and decreased the number of absences.
•Parent involvement increases motivation and improves self esteem.
•Parent involvement has decreased the use of drugs, alcohol, and violent behavior.
You can see from this short yet powerful list that parent involvement reaches far beyond just the education system. Parent involvement reaches the core of a child’s personality and their social behaviors as well.
Types of Parent Involvement
There are many different ways to get involved in your child’s life. Joyce Epstein of Johns Hopkins University has defined six different types of parent involvement that helps educators in developing school and family partnerships. A few of her ideas are:
1.Be the Parent: It is important to establish a home environment that supports children in all aspects of life, especially in education. There are parent education classes that can be taken, family support programs for health and wellness, and home visits that can be make to ensure the healthy of the home environment.
2.Open the lines of communication: There needs to be effective communication between the home and school organizations in order to monitor a child’s progress. This can be done through conferences, volunteer efforts, and simple phone calls. Along with Epstein’s ideas, there should also be open lines of communication outside of the classroom. If you are going to be involved as a parent then you need to know where your child is after school as well.
3.Learning at home: Information can be provided to families about how to help students with homework and other extra-curricular activities. Families need to encourage their children to learn in and out of the home by helping them set goals and meeting those goals.
Once you have can understand the importance of parent involvement you can begin to change the way you are living and truly get involved with the life of your child. Parent involvement extends past the classroom; help your child be successful and happy by being involved.