Jefferson County Schools’ Comprehensive Approach to Family Engagement

Session notes from “Jefferson County Schools’ Comprehensive Approach to Family Engagement,” presented by Chrystal Hawkins and Andrea Brown.

What was the speaker’s main message?

The speakers described the strategies that were used to increase family engagement from the district, to schools, to the community.

What were the top ideas from the session?

  • Find out why some of your parents are not coming in by asking them.
  • Tap into your upset parents. They are the ones that have the energy to help your schools if you can channel their energy to the right things.
  • Develop a parent advisory council and use parent leaders to support others school as they work to involve their own parents.
  • Real time language translation headphones eliminated a language barrier.

What is one strategy that you will implement immediately?

Real time translator earphones are something to implement immediately.

What is one strategy that will help you with instructional leadership?

 Simultaneous translation earbuds will eliminate the language barrier that exists for families that are not able to access important information about supporting education though they may have a desire.

What is one idea that you want to learn more about?

I want to learn more about the Parent Advisory Panel at the district level.

What are three resources you will check out?

I want to learn more about the National Center for Family Learning and the ways in which the organization supports school districts with family engagement and also articles by Ferlazzo (2011) and Mapp (2021).

I can’t wait to tell my teachers about this idea:

Mapp’s new approach to family engagement is something I will tell teachers about.

Notes by Aqila Malpass, curriculum coordinator, Hoover City Schools in Hoover, Alabama.