Should Parents Step in to Fill Gaps in the Education System?

Listen to or read “Learning with Less: As Schools Cut Back, Parents Step In.”  I invite you to let me know what you think the role of parents should be in a child’s education.  What is expected from parents these days?  Do parents have the tools to support their students in the way the distinct is asking us to? I’d love to hear from parents with kids enrolled in local schools AND from those of you who don’t have kids but have thoughts on the implications of this issue.

As a fairly new parent of two children who are not yet school aged, I’ve already started to think about the role that I and my husband have in the education of our daughter and son.  I happen to be from a family of educators, so the lines between parent and teacher are a little blurred for me!  But as someone who has also been working in the community with kids and families from all over Portland, I know that “parental involvement” can be many things AND that many parents have had negative experiences in school themselves and are either unprepared or alienated from being an even more involved…and there are many reasons parents participate to various degrees in their children’s education.  This post is much less about judging parents and much more about figuring out what a parent’s role should be and what it has to be in a time of limited educational resources.

What do you think the role of parents should be in a child’s education?  What do you think the role of parents has to be now with the state of PPS schools today?  What kinds of supports are there for parents?  How can we become more involved supporting parents in ways that will be productive for their children?

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2 thoughts on “Should Parents Step in to Fill Gaps in the Education System?

  1. Parental involvement is HUGE! As you know Delaney has just started pre-school so I am extremely new to this idea. I am mostly using my school career as an example when I say that parents make all the difference. I was very withdrawn from school. My mom had me walking to school as early as 2nd grade and many times I was unaware of late-starts and had to sit at school for 2 hours until it started. My mom was never involved and never made an effort when it came to wanting to know about school events or anything of the sort! This created a barrier for me as a student and I was not accepted by the students or teachers because of it. I feel that things could have been different if my mom had shown any form of support of school and making it a more positive experience overall.
    This has made me an extremely involved parent, and I hope that Delaney flourishes because of it! Open communication on all ends of the spectrum can never hurt 🙂
    ~Casey

  2. Casey…and Other Involved Parents:

    As you start out as a preschool parent, have you received information about how to be more involved? How do you keep yourself informed and active? Does this primarily include being active with your daughter at home? Or does it also include trying to get involved with what happens at school and with the school system?

    Thanks for discussing your experience here! My daughter is almost two, so preschool is something I’ve been thinking about a lot!

    -ZNC

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