It Takes a Village to Raise a Child

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It takes a village to raise a child is a popular proverb with a clear message: the whole community has an essential role to play in the growth and development of its young people. In addition to the vital role that parents and family members play in a child’s education, the broader community too has a responsibility to assure high-quality education for all students. In the past, parent involvement was characterized by volunteers, mostly mothers, assisting in the classroom, chaperoning students, and fundraising. Today, the old model has been replaced with a much more inclusive approach: school-family-community partnerships now include mothers and fathers, stepparents, grandparents, fosterparents, other relatives and caregivers, business leaders and community groups–all participating in goal-oriented activities, at all grade levels, linked to student achievement and school success. The research is clear, consistent, and convincing. Parent, family, and community involvement in education correlates with higher academic performance and school improvement. When schools, parents, families, and communities work together to support learning, students tend to earn higher grades, attend school more regularly, stay in school longer, and enroll in higher level programs. Researchers cite parent-family community involvement as a key to addressing the school dropout crisis1 and note that strong school-family-community partnerships foster higher educational aspirations and It takes a village to raise a child is a popular proverb with a clear message: the whole community has an essential role to play in the growth and development of its young people. In addition to the vital role that parents and family members play in a child’s education, the broader community too has a responsibility to assure high-quality education for all students. In the past, parent involvement was characterized by volunteers, mostly mothers, assisting in the classroom, chaperoning students,...
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