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Letters to Congress about new report, Family-School-Community Partnerships 2.0 - Revitalizing the Title I School-Parent Compact

January 17, 2012

Dear Senator/Representative:


Revitalizing the Title I School-Parent Compact in Bridgeport, Connecticut, is one of 16 exemplary efforts profiled in Family-School-Community Partnerships 2.0, a new research-based report on the role of families and communities in raising student achievement from the National Education Association, which represents 3.2 million educators nationwide.

Family School Partnerships 2.0 is part of NEA’s Priority Schools Campaign, which aims to transform struggling schools — especially the bottom five percent eligible for U.S. Department of Education School Improvement Grants — in collaboration with parents, students, and community groups. Such efforts are most effective “when schools link activities for families to what students are learning and doing in class,” according to the report.

By law, every school that receives funds under Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA) must have a written compact with parents. The revitalized compact at Geraldine W. Johnson Elementary-Middle School in Bridgeport, a model that is spreading to other schools, includes home-based learning activities — for example, questions to ask while watching a movie or ideas for using math at the grocery store.

NEA members play an active role in all of the initiatives profiled in Family School Partnerships 2.0. Other common elements include mechanisms to evaluate student outcomes, reasonable cost, and potential for replication. Successful strategies identified by the researchers include:

  • Setting high expectations for students
  • Using data to determine priorities and strategies
  • Tailoring programs to local needs

The full profile of Bridgeport’s Title I School-Parent Compact is attached and available online at http://bit.ly/s4EZ5f, along with the rest of the report. We urge you to check it out!

Sincerely,

Kim Anderson
Director, Center for Advocacy

Mary Kusler
Director, Government Relations