Family and Community Engagement

The South Carolina Department of Education (SCDE) defines parent engagement as when “parents and families are actively involved in the learning and development of all students to become college-and career-ready.” The evolution from the use of the term parent “involvement” to the use of parent “engagement” signifies moving from the goal of expecting parents to routinely attend school functions to a more active role as partners in students’ educational processes.

Approaches to family engagement may be different depending on the age of the student and the school and community context. Some families of at-risk students may need help with how to access extended learning opportunities, tutoring, or other types of extra academic supports for their student within a school; and some families may need help in more effectively interacting with their student’s teacher, principal, or other school staff.

To the extent that schools and LEAs are successful in giving families the tools, skills, and needed information to help their student, the families are more likely to be better able to support their student at home. Moving families to a more “engaged” status, particularly in high-poverty communities, is a challenge faced by many low performing schools.

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This website was developed under a grant from the Department of Education through the Office of Program and Grantee Support Services (PGSS) within the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE), by the Region 6 Comprehensive Center (RC6) at the SERVE Center at UNC Greensboro under Award #S283B190055. This website contains resources that are provided for the reader’s convenience. These materials may contain the views and recommendations of various subject matter experts as well as hypertext links, contact addresses, and websites to information created and maintained by other public and private organizations. The U.S. Department of Education (ED) does not control or guarantee the accuracy, relevance, timeliness, or completeness of any outside information included in these materials. The views expressed herein do not necessarily represent the positions or policies of the U.S. Department of Education. No official endorsement by the U.S. Department of Education of any product, commodity, service, enterprise, curriculum, or program of instruction mentioned in this document is intended or should be inferred.

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