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Family & Community Engagement Toolkit


The purpose of the Family & Community Engagement Toolkit is to provide parents, school districts and AEA staff the most current research, "best of the best" resources and practical tools in order to create a school community that integrates all stakeholders in student learning in a way that is:

  • Systemic - aligned to core goals
  • Integrated - embedded into structures and processes designed to meet goals
  • Sustainable - operates with adequate resources that are continually strengthened and improved

Effective family and community engagement is:

  • A shared responsibility
  • Continuous from cradle to career
  • Reinforces learning that takes place in all settings

All Family Members Are Important

Throughout the toolkit, we frequently use the words “family” or “families” in place of “parent” or “parents.” We want to recognize that all family members—siblings, grandparents, aunts, uncles and “fictive kin,” who may be friends or neighbors,—often contribute in significant ways to children’s education and development. If a study uses the terms “parent” or “parents,” we stick to the terminology used by the researchers.

The Family & Community Engagement toolkit has four sections and are systematically organized around three essential questions:

  1. Why does family and community engagement matter?
  2. What can we do? (assessment/planning for action)
  3. How will we know we made a difference? (formative and summative evaluation)
  4. Additional research, websites, tools and other resources

1-4 are clickable links for more information on each question.

For more information or questions, contact:

photo of Terry Mendell

Terry Mendell
Family & Educator Partnership Lead Coordinator
(800) 255-0405 ext. 17135

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