Crowley ISD Pre-Kindergarten Family Engagement Plan
OverviewFamily engagement is defined as the mutual responsibility of families, schools and communities to build relationships that support student learning and achievement as well as support family well-being that encourages the continuous learning and development of children, families and educators. Family engagement is fully integrated in the child’s educational experience and supports the whole child as it recognizes and responds appropriately to both cultural and linguistically diversity. Family engagement has been recognized by both researchers and practitioners as key component that plays a non-negotiable role in the educational process.
According to the Texas Education Agency, the goal of the High– Quality Pre-Kindergarten Grant Program is to: “provide districts with an opportunity to expand or enhance high –quality prekindergarten programs for qualifying students.” As mentioned above, a major component of expanding and enhancing any education program is a high-quality family engagement design.
Facilitate Family-to-Family Support
CISD elementary campuses will facilitate family–to-family support using strategies provided in the Frog Street curriculum. Parents and caregivers receive emails, texts, and app notifications in English and Spanish that assist them in understanding activities that can be done at home and in the community to practice and deepen skills and concepts that have been taught at school as part of the curriculum. Parents and caregivers are encouraged to attend trainings that equip them to have more meaningful interactions with their children and turn everyday situations into learning opportunities. Also, pre-kindergarten families are encouraged to attend the campus Family Nights, as well as the campus early literacy and math workshops that further provide and explain learning activities which are age and developmentally appropriate to help parents and caregivers prepare the child for kindergarten.
Establish a Network of Community Resources
CISD will work in establishing a broader network of community resources. We have a very active partnership with community and faith-based organizations to enhance the resources available that will directly benefit prekindergarten families as needed: Some of these organizations are:
• JPS Health Care Center• Catholic Charities parent support
• Local family support services/food pantry
• Crowley House of Hope
Increase Family Participation in Decision Making
CISD will work to increase family participation in decision making at all elementary campuses. Parents are included on both campus and district committees. Each elementary campus has a Back to School Parent Night where Prekindergarten teachers share yearly goals and expectations. Prekindergarten teachers also communicate daily with parents through two-way communication folders so that the parents are informed of current activities and upcoming events so that parents can ask questions and offer suggestions. The district also provides an annual parent survey to gather feedback for continuous improvement on all campuses. The parents of prekindergarten children are also invited to serve on:
• The Campus Performance Objective Committee (CPOC) and the District Wide Education Improvement Committee (DWEIC)
• Invite family feedback
• District family engagement survey
Equip facilities with Tools to Enhance and Extend Learning to Increase Student Achievement
We will equip families with tools to enhance and extend learning from the classroom to the home. The counselor’s will collaborate with families to appropriately respond to children’s behavior in a non–punitive, positive and supportive manner. Prekindergarten teachers and teacher assistance will provide parents with opportunities to participate with campus initiatives such as:
• Campus and District resource opportunities, such as, JPS Health Services, Catholic Charites parent support, etc.
• Volunteering on campus
• Prekindergarten specific family engagement activities
Provide Professional Development Opportunities for Educators that Support Families in Meeting Their Children’s Learning
The Prekindergarten staff will develop skills in evident-based practices by utilizing campus training and district level professional development opportunities. We strive to provide trainings on communicating with families in crisis situations, culturally diverse, relevant, and responsive family engagement strategies, and use evaluations for continuous improvement. The Prekindergarten staff will bring awareness to family engagement, ESSA and HB4 requirements and guidelines with emphasis on the value and impact of family engagement by providing Prekindergarten teachers, and teacher assistance with staff professional development throughout the year.
• Prekindergarten teachers’ staff development plans will include strands on cultural diversity
• Evidence based strategies to involve parents in the educational decisions
• CISD staff will be educated in the value and utility of the contributions of parents
• Professional development will be provided for counselor
CISD will evaluate its family engagement process and efforts through the district survey. Training, workshops, meeting and family engagement activities are followed with an evaluation which provides families the opportunities to express their views for continuous improvement. Campus and district will encourage families to participate in the district wide survey, as well as campus surveys. We will use the information to:
• Provide valuable information in planning, developing and implementing prekindergarten activities for the district.
• Revise/review prekindergarten curriculum and compacts annually