Parent and Family Engagement

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Improve your child's school You're concerned about what your kids are exposed to the forty hours a week they're at school. You know the school could be improved with more parental involvement, but are unsure of where to start. We have the perfect solution - All Pro Dad's Days and iMOM Mornings.

Access: All Pro Dad   

Through the years, ASK has taken on new community partners, projects and challenges. They continue to build on their early vision of being a one-stop-shop to provide information and resources to individuals with disabilities and their families.

Access: ASK Resource Center


Bedtime stories play an important role in your child’s development. Not only do bedtime stories create an opportunity for parents to bond with their kids, but reading to a little one at the same time night after night can help them establish a healthy sleep routine Check out these tips and resources, including healthy sleep tips at Tucked's A Parent's Guide to Healthy Sleeping.

Access: Bedtime Stories for Children

Best is a resource for students seeking to determine college options.  The students and their families can check on online associate degrees, bachelors degrees, colleges by state, and also access answers for why?  financing? and resources for success.

Access: Best

Campus Tours is an interactive virtual tour of college/university campuses for parents and their college-bound students.

Access: Campus Tours

A child's social and emotional development begins in infancy and is nurtured through interactions with his or her primary caregivers. Parents and educators may access multiple articles.  

Access: CASEL - The Collaborative for Academic, Social, and Emotional Learning  


The Center for Parent Information and Resources (CPIR) serves as a central resource of information and products to the community of Parent Training Information (PTI) Centers and the Community Parent Resource Centers (CPRCs), so that they can focus their efforts on serving families of children with disabilities.

Access: Center for Parent information and Resources

The Center on Innovation & Improvement, Directed by Sam Redding, supports regional centers in their work with states to provide districts, schools, and families with the opportunity, information, and skills to make wise decisions on behalf of students.  The Center on Innovation & Improvement is administered by the Academic Development Institute in collaboration with its partners, the Temple University Institute for Schools and Society (Philadelphia, PA), Center for School Improvement & Policy Studies at Boise State University (Boise, ID), and Little Planet Learning (Nashville, TN).

Access: Center on Innovation and Improvement

Resources are available to support community educational programs for at-risk children, youth, and families which are based on locally identified needs, soundly grounded in research, and which lead to the accomplishment of one of four CYFAR National Outcomes. The resources also help local projects to integrate programming into ongoing Extension programs for children, youth, and families — ensuring that at-risk, low-income children, youth, and families continue to be part of Extension and 4-H programs and have access to resources and educational opportunities. (University of Minnesota)

Access:  Children - Youth - Families

Dr. James P. Comer and his colleagues at the Yale Child Study Center began to create the School Development Program (SDP) in 1968. The SDP is the first reported school intervention program in which the test scores, behavior, and attendance of poor and/or socially marginalized students improved dramatically. Also, it was the first intervention in which the application of child and adolescent development principles was used school-wide to create interactions and/or relationships that prepared students to learn, and to begin to take responsibility for their own learning; and enabled teachers, school staff and administrators to support student personal development and learning. 

Access: Comer School Development Program:  Dr. James P. Comer

 Summary by Lou Howell of this book.

Access: The Culturally Proficient School

This downloadable PDF file focuses specifically on three categories: race or ethnicity, culture (including language), and socioeconomic status. The report explores barriers to involvement for minotrity and low-income families, strategies that have been used to address these barriers, and recommendations that local educational leaders can adapt to address their specific needs. It is based on a review of over 64 studies.

Access: Diversity: School, Family, and Community Connections   

The Education Trust is a national non-profit advocacy organization that promotes high academic achievement for all students at all levels, particularly for students of color and low-income students.  They were founded for one reason and one reason alone: to push, prod, and cajole our country toward educational justice.  From their beginnings in the early 1990s, their unrelenting advocacy continues to be supported by solid data analysis, equity-focused legislative proposals, strong partnerships with leading organizations, and proven strategies to improve the educational outcomes of our nation’s youth.  With these tools they aim to expose — and eliminate — the gaps in opportunity by race and income that have led to enormous gaps in educational achievement, pre-K through college. These gaps can severely limit economic and social mobility.

Access:The Education Trust

Parent involvement in schools is much more than parent conferences and PTOs... In the resources provided, learn about practical ways in which schools are involving parents. Read about parent involvement strategies that are working for others -- and that could work for you!

Access:  Education World's Parent Involvement

Learn and share ideas about how to engage caring individuals, organizations, and businesses to help schools with resources, mentors, internships, and more.

Access: Edutopia's Community Partnerships


Teachers, administrators, and other school personnel will find relevant and valuable tools and resources here for strengthening bonds between schools, families, and communities.

Access: Edutopia's Family Engagement

For parents who are interested in engaging more deeply with their kids' teachers and school communities.

Access:  Edutopia's Parent Partnership

Fayette County Public Schools of Kentucky recognize that family and community engagement is essential as they partner to educate students and prepare them for life-long learning. FCPS envisions a districtwide culture that promotes collaborative partnerships to support student learning, enrich educational experiences, and prepare students to excel as successful citizens in a global society. Once parents, teachers, and community members view one another as partners in education, a caring community forms around students, helping to ensure success.

Access: Family and Community Engagement (FACE)

This survey can be used by teachers, administrators and parents to assess a school’s effectiveness in partnering with families and communities. It is a useful tool for planning strategies that are clustered around four domains: (a) student achievement; (b) access and equity; (c) organizational support; and (d) quality of interaction. The questions and ideas used in the guide are gleaned from the literature on effective partnering with communities and families. (Also available in Spanish)

Access:  Family and Community Engagement Survey

  • The Iowa Department of Education provides information regarding the AEAs’ Family and Educator Resources, formerly Parent Education Connection (PEC), including guiding practices, supportive documents, AEA contacts, and links.

Access:  Family and Parent Educator Connection  

This resource from the Harvard Family Research Project provides this selective list of resources about engaging and supporting families with young children.

Access: Family Engagement in Early Childhood

Would you consider your child's school to be Family Friendly? We want to know!

Access:  Family Friendly Schools

FAST® is an internationally acclaimed parent engagement program that helps children thrive by building strong relationships at home.  Families & Schools Together (FAST) is a multifamily group intervention designed to build protective factors for children and empower parents to be the primary prevention agents for their own children. Although developed by Dr. Lynn McDonald in 1988 for at-risk youth and their families, FAST is now offered as a universal model to children, ages 3 through 18. It became an evidence-based model in 2002.

Access:  FAST - Families and Schools Together

GreatSchools is the leading nonprofit providing high-quality information that supports parents pursuing a great education for their child, schools striving for excellence, and communities working to diminish inequities in education.

Over 49 million users visit our award-winning website each year to learn about schools in their area, explore research insights, and access thousands of free, evidence-based parenting resources to support their child’s learning and well-being.

Access:  Great Schools

In this Ecology of Learning, Global Family Research Project elevates the benefits of family engagement and the connections across educational organizations, nationally and globally.

Access:  Global Family Research Project

This article by Karen Mapp identifies factors that lead to successful educational partnerships between school staff and families.

Access:  Having Their Say: Parents Describe Why and How They Are Engaged in Their Children's Learning   

iMOM  is a nonprofit program started by Lauren Dungy, Denise Jonas, and Family First.  This program is intended to provide a way to engage moms in their children’s education, and also to give something back to moms in the way of support, information, tips, and ideas.

Access:  iMOM 

This tool helps to foster meaningful and lasting educational impact through mechanisms for engagement with parents and families. It provides helpful ideas to address the most significant barriers to parent involvement that have been reported in the literature in K-12 programs. The guide gives ideas for each barrier to achieve a greater vision of engagement and offers planning guides to see how your school is addressing each barrier and what can be done for the future. It can be used with school personnel in conjunction with parents. (Available in English and Spanish)

Access: Improving Educational Impact through Family Engagement - A Review and Planning Guide  

This site from the Iowa Department of Education provides parent guides as well as resources for families from The Iowa Reading Research Center (IRRC).

Access: Iowa Core - Parents and Community

Iowa PTA  works to promote the health, education and welfare of children and youth in homes, schools and communities, and to develop partnerships between parents, educators and the general public. Iowa PTA serves PTA leaders and members throughout Iowa, presenting workshops and offering printed and video resources, quarterly bulletins, monthly electronic newsletters, and maintaining this website to assist PTAs in the important work they do on behalf of children. State PTA board members attend PTA meetings throughout the state to do presentations and provide training or support for PTA units and councils in their own hometown.

Access:  Iowa PTA 

This is a collection of web-based literacy resources (more than 170)  to help families and teachers support literacy development with children at home.

Access:  The Iowa Reading Research Center (IRRC)

This site provides parents with information on general health of their kids as well as behavioral, emotional and medical concerns.

Access:  Kids' Health

KnowHow2GO is a campaign designed to encourage students and veterans to prepare for college. Explore the site to learn more about the steps parents and their students need to take to be college-ready.

Access:  KnowHow2Go

“Learning at Home” provides resources and activities for parents and families to support continued learning outcomes with their children at home during the coronavirus pandemic. The resources below are grouped and organized by content, including General Resources, Literacy, Writing and Math Resources and resources for Helping Children and Families Process COVID-19.

Access:  Learning at Home - Resources for Families

Engaging parents and community members effectively in the life of schools and districts is both complex and vital to the success of the students in the system. Given this challenge and imperative, educators must develop ways of engaging parents and community members successfully with the goals of their schools.

Access: Learning First Alliance: Parent and Community Involvement   

A place where parents of children in special education can find everything they need to know to be their child's best advocate.

Access:  National Association of Parents with Children in Special Education

SEDL (a division of AIR - American Institutes for Research) supports school, family, and community connections to increase school success.  The most popular resources for family engagement are found here.

Access:  The National Center for Family and Community Connections with Schools

NEPEM is not a parent education program. It is a list of 29 critical parenting practices organized into six themes. Together, these practices identified issues that Extension professionals across the entire United States could agree were important.

Access:  National Extension Parent Education Model  

National PTA® comprises millions of families, students, teachers, administrators, and business and community leaders devoted to the educational success of children and the promotion of parent involvement in schools.

Access:  National PTA

This short handout lists the eight key findings from A New Wave of Evidence: The Impact of School, Family and Community Connections on Student Achievement. It cites specific studies supporting each key finding, and provides a full reference list for those studies.

Access:  A New Wave of Evidence: Key Findings

Their training, professional development, and evaluation services build the capacity of schools, families, and communities to support learners from cradle to college and career. They implement national training systems for volunteer programs that address poverty, and work with collective impact efforts to address complex community challenges.

Access:  Northwest - Family and Community Engagement

Pacer Center is a champion for children with disabilities.  PACER Center is a parent training and information center for families of children and youth with all disabilities from birth to young adults. Located in Minneapolis, it serves families across the nation, as well as those in Minnesota. Parents can find publications, workshops, and other resources to help make decisions about education, vocational training, employment, and other services for their children with disabilities. PACER’s National Bullying Prevention Center provides resources designed to benefit all students, including those with disabilities. It provides an anti-bullying site for elementary kids and one for teens.

Access:  Pacer Center

Sleep is so important for your child's development and well being. Here's a parent's guide to dealing with sleep related issues amongst children of all ages, from babies to teenagers.

Access:  A Parent's Guide to Healthy Sleep

The United States Department of Education offers resources on early childhood, reading, special education, paying for college, and helping your child learn.

Access:  Parents - Ed.Gov

Parents and families want the best for their family members. The Parents and Families Resource page brings together U.S. Department of Education-funded centers, department programs, and additional information of interest for parents and families.

Access:  Parents and Families - Individuals with Disabilities Education Act

PBS Parents provides a wide variety of educational resources for parents and children.

Access:  PBS Parents  

Project Appleseed provides 150 activities for family engagement.  For over 20 years, Project Appleseed has been an effective advocacy organization that engages public school families by mobilizing volunteers, building responsibility and promoting accountability — both at school and at home. They focus on low-income and under-served families and schools. The positive effect of their efforts are clear: academic achievement rises in tandem with parental involvement.

Access:  Project Appleseed

School Community Network provides tools and resources to engage families in student learning and build strong school communities. 

Access:  School Community Network

This page was last updated: 6/21/24