New Jersey Focus on Parent Engagement for English Learners

New Jersey Focus on Parent Engagement for English Learners

“Research indicates a strong association between parent involvement with a child’s education both at home and at school and student performance in school. Engaging parents is particularly important for English learners and students from low‐income families.  In fact, greater parent involvement is correlated with higher student test scores and better grades for the school as a whole” – The Power of Parents, Thigpen & Freedberg

In a guide titled, “A Parent Involvement Guide for Educators of English Language Learners” provided by the New Jersey State Board of Education, New Jersey school districts can meet the educational needs of Limited English Proficient students in two ways: actively involve parents in the school-going process and train staff that is informed, aware, and knowledgeable of the techniques for creating a supportive learning environment for these students and their parents.

According to the guide, there are six types of parent involvement that help students learn and grow at home, in school, and in the community. The six types of parental involvement are:

  • Parenting
  • Communicating
  • Volunteering
  • Learning At Home
  • Decision Making
  • Collaborating With the Community

The Latino Family Literacy Project™ provides staff development workshops that can help New Jersey school districts target these six areas of parent involvement, particularly for Latino families, because our training bears them in mind. For example, our training ensures that staff understands the needs of Latino parents by first understanding the socioeconomic and acculturation processes, as well as the linguistic knowledge of Latino families. In doing so, staff can effectively reach out and communicate with Latino parents and anticipate their needs. Moreover, our curriculum encourages critical reflection and dialogue by means of reading, writing, and art projects. Parents are then encouraged to apply strategies learned from our program and implement them at home with their children through the use of our culturally related, bilingual books. Finally, The Latino Family Literacy Project™ supports a collaborative environment by allowing constructive discussion between administrators, teachers, and parents.

If you would like more information, please take a look at this video to see how The Latino Family Literacy Project™ was successfully implemented at Soccoro School District. Also, take a look at our programs here.

Katherine Del MonteNew Jersey Focus on Parent Engagement for English Learners