Issue Background

Family Engagement

To learn more about Family Engagement in Education, please visit the following pages:

The Family Engagement in Education Act: Includes a summary and funding breakdown of the Act as well as information on how PTA's can help get the act passed!

Public Policy Agenda Family Engagement Webinar: A brief webinar detailing National PTA's position and recommendation on Family Engagement as outlined in its Public Policy Agenda.

The National Standards for Family-School Partnerships: Outlines the six standards for welcoming all families into schools.

More than 40 years of research shows that when families are engaged, students are more likely to score higher on tests, earn higher grades, attend school regularly, have better social skills, demonstrate improved behavior, adapt well to school, graduate from high school on time, and pursue postsecondary education, regardless of their income level. In fact, proactive family engagement can raise student achievement so substantially that schools would need to increase spending by more than $1000 per pupil to gain the same results. Furthermore, teachers are much more likely to remain in schools where parents are involved and where they report high levels of trust with parents

Despite bipartisan consensus on the importance of family engagement in education, there remains no central mechanism to translate federal family engagement policies into general practice in states and local communities. The only stand-alone federal program for general education family engagement – Parental Information and Resource Centers (PIRCs) – was defunded in 2011. Thus, there is little evidence that states, districts, and schools are implementing ESEA-NCLB’s family engagement provisions to meaningfully engage families in the education of their children.