Families, educators, and students are all experiencing school differently right now, whether the fall semester is in-person, virtual, or a hybrid model. While we do not know what is ahead, the connection between home and school remains essential. During these unprecedented times, educators and families must be true allies in education to ensure all students succeed and all families feel supported. At Flamboyan we believe that practicing REAL Family Engagement has never been more important. Read on for a curated list of trusted Resources and Reads for ideas, guidance, and tools to support meaningful family engagement now and moving forward.
As mentioned in our Statement of Solidarity, Flamboyan is choosing to be an anti-racist organization by doubling down on our longstanding commitment to confronting injustice, disrupting bias within our own organization and within our work, and honoring the dignity and value of people. Our efforts to create real and meaningful family engagement in schools and school systems across the country are grounded in seeing people, knowing people, and loving people for who they are. If you’re looking for places to begin or continue your anti-racist journey, consider visiting some of these trusted sources.
DECEMBER 2020 ——————————————————————————————————————
Over the past six months, education has gone through many rapid, dramatic changes, and as the fall semester draws to a close, many of us are reflecting on what happened. For our final installment of Resources + Reads, we’re sharing stories from families, teachers, students, and schools.
- TNTP: An Atlanta engagement specialist calls us to redefine family and community engagement
- THE 74 MILLION: A parent reflects on how her family is surviving virtual kindergarten (sort of)
- CHALKBEAT: Colorado’s superintendent of the year offers a pandemic prescription: frequent communication, fewer tests
- CHALKBEAT: Newark bilingual teacher uses her own journey to inspire students during distance learning (también disponible en español)
- TEXAS TRIBUNE: A Texas high school senior cares for her siblings and balances school during the pandemic
- EDWEEK: A California teacher interviews his students: “Distance Learning ‘Has Been OK, I Guess’”
- HECHINGER REPORT: Louisana teachers are recovering from back-to-back hurricanes during the pandemic
- FLAMBOYAN FOUNDATION: A Washington, DC school celebrates the holidays with its community at a distance
NOVEMBER 2020 ——————————————————————————————————————
- PANORAMAED: An open-source family engagement survey that can be used in the classroom, school, or district levels to understand your school community.
- GLOBAL FRP: Advice on building the next generation of family engagement using design thinking and an activity guide to make it happen.
- RAISE YOUR HAND: A student-led movement’s demands for fighting bias in America’s school system and how-to guides for students to act.
- EDTRUST: An interactive tool to understand educator diversity practices across the US, review each state’s educator diversity data, and see how your state rates against other state profiles.
- EDWEEK: An op-ed that explores the myth of the “family-disengagement problem.”
- CARNEGIE CORPORATION: On why the pandemic presents a rare opening for changing the ways families engage with their children’s education.
- TALKING POINTS: A teacher’s advice on communicating with families, especially around holiday breaks.
- FLAMBOYAN FOUNDATION: The latest in our webinar series, Listen, Learn, Lead: Reflections from System Leaders.
OCTOBER 2020 ——————————————————————————————————————
- FLAMBOYAN FOUNDATION: Academic Partnering Toolkit and a Companion Guide for School Leaders
- TEACHING CHANNEL: A guide to elementary age student-led conferences
- EDUTOPIA: Another guide for holding student-led conferences with middle schoolers
- FYI: A database of learning sites – built by a student! – to support individual educational needs
- COMMON SENSE ED: Tech tips for holding virtual family-teacher conferences.
- SEEK COMMON GROUND: Guides that explain what their kids should know and be able to do by the end of each grade in literacy and math.
- EDTRUST: The ExtraOrdinary Districts in Extraordinary Times podcast explores the problems educators face, the solutions they fashion, and what they hope will come out of this time.
- NAEYC: A parent advocates for using Zoom Circles and Google Hangouts to check in with families and connect them with each other.
- CARNEGIE CORPORATION: Why the pandemic presents a rare opening for improving the way we educate kids.
SEPTEMBER 2020 ——————————————————————————————————————-
- FLAMBOYAN FOUNDATION: Ongoing Communication Reflection Tool to support your practice of building trusting relationships and meaningful partnerships with families.
- WATERFORD: An explainer on what two-way communication is and how it can boost family engagement.
- COMMON SENSE EDUCATION: A thorough guide for educators about the apps and websites that can improve communication with families.
- NWEA: A toolkit for making collaboration with families easier during remote learning.
- THE ATLANTIC: A study reveals how immigration status and race impact whether or not an educator will reach out to a student’s family.
- UNDERSTOOD: Educators’ perspectives on how to make sure Black and Brown Families are heard by the school.
- THE 74 MILLION: Insights into what families expect from educators during distance learning and how families and educators can collaborate to achieve it.
- HECHINGER REPORT: Cognitive scientists find new ways to lessen inequality and keep parents involved through technology.
AUGUST 2020 ————————————————————————————————————————-
- FLAMBOYAN FOUNDATION: Beginning of the Year Relationship Building Toolkit, designed to help educators build trusting relationships with families, even at a distance.
- TNTP: A guide to planning community conversations to gain insight and advice about students and families’ experiences during distance learning.
- FUTURE READY SCHOOLS: A guide for school leaders to create communication structures for teachers and staff, students, and families amid uncertainty.
- XFINITY: Map of Xfinity Hotspots across the US, which are free to anyone who needs them, including non-Xfinity Internet customers.
- COMMON SENSE EDUCATION: A teacher’s guide to Zoom and a list of the best messaging apps and websites for educators and families.
- GETTING SMART: Advice on building school and classroom community during distance learning.
- BELLWETHER EDUCATION PARTNERS: Why you should check on students and families’ needs first and focus on standards and accountability later.
- EDTRUST: An interactive list of questions and ideas for equity advocates to ask during distance learning.
JULY 2020 —————————————————————————————————————————-
- THE 74 MILLION: Your Child’s Education, Explained is a channel to help families better understand and engage with their child’s school.
- LEARNING HEROES: Anti-racism resource directory for families, sorted by age group.
- EDNAVIGATOR: Resource bundle for parents to support summer learning.
- CHALKBEAT: Learn how a NYC music teacher creatively connected with students during distance learning.
- EDSURGE: A learning designer shares advice about creating emotionally connected online learning experiences.
- THE 74 MILLION: Educators and advocates share what parts of remote learning and in-person teaching work best.
- EDSURGE: Edtech researchers share guidance for how schools and districts can choose the right tools to support SEL learning.
JUNE 2020 —————————————————————————————————————————-
- NAFSCE: A growing list of resources for Practitioners, Educators, and Families in response to the coronavirus crisis.
- CAMPAIGN FOR GRADE-LEVEL READING: The 2020 GLR Week is a call to action called the Learning Loss Recovery Challenge, from July 13-17.
- EDSURGE: A secondary distance learning schedule developed with brain science research.
- FLAMBOYAN FOUNDATION: Getting Started with REAL Family Engagement during Distance Learning, and Strategies to Engage Unreached Families during COVID-19.
- FLAMBOYAN FOUNDATION: Spanish read alouds of beloved texts by the Flamboyan team in Puerto Rico.
- THE 74 MILLION: In the Face of American ‘Truth Decay,’ Polls Shed Light on How Much Families Are Hurting During COVID-19
- FLAMBOYAN FOUNDATION: Recording of the “Listen, Learn, Lead: Community Reflections during COVID-19” webinar.
- FLAMBOYAN FOUNDATION: The Shifting Perspectives column features staff and community member stories.
MAY 2020 —————————————————————————————————————————-
- A list of resources for DC families from Parents Amplifying Voices in Education (PAVE).
- A growing list of resources from PTHV to support home visit practitioners as they navigate social distancing and stay-at-home orders.
- Survey questions developed by TNTP to give school system leaders regular updates on how key stakeholders are experiencing the shift to at-home learning.
- A video from New America with strategies to engage families and support youngsters, dual language learners, and those living in under-resourced communities.
- Tips and resources for helping parents cope with kids at home – written by parents! – from EdNavigator.
- A checklist for building relationships with students during COVID-19, especially secondary students, from the Search Institute.
- EDSOURCE: Why distance learning is a success in one California district
- THE EQUITY LAB: Let’s Not Go Back to the Way Things Were
- THE HECHINGER REPORT: A coronavirus case study: What has happened when campuses shut down for other disasters?
- THE 74 MILLION: Despite ‘COVID Slide’ Concerns, Most Educators Oppose Extending Upcoming School Year to Stave Off Negative Effects
- THE 74 MILLION : A collection of opinion pieces from students