There is a grassroots, advocacy organization in Georgia, Gwinnett STOPP , that is empowering and educating parents. Teaching parents advocacy strategies and increasing the engagement of parents in the school improvement work is their focus. “In order for us to improve schools, everyone must be involved. This includes students, parents, teachers and stakeholders. We must all be at the table!” Marilyn Tillman, leader of Gwinnett SToPP, made this statement a few years ago at a public education forum I attended in Atlanta. In studying family engagement, I too believe that if we don’t begin to reach more parents and communities, then our school turn around plans will start to follow the same pattern as previously failed reform models. This shows us why it is critically important for us to also educate, empower and engage parents. It is also equally important for parents to understand how impactful their support and engagement is to increasing student achievement. Gwinnett SToPP is right on point in helping build capacity in this area. I believe by doing this we will continue to see consistent, upward spirals in student achievement.
Gwinnett SToPP recently posted a blog including their view and some of this information on their page. The organization believes that parents must engage for equity . They believe this will help ensure fidelity is provided and seen through the implementation of the ESSA (Every Student Succeeds Act) in Georgia schools. Therefore, it’s a critical time for parents to wake up, step up and be the voices for their children. Advocacy is a huge component of the national family engagement standards and best practices. Parent organizations are trained to help reach, empower, engage and educate parents so that they can ensure their child(ren) is receiving the best education for them. Gwinnett SToPP is doing their parent to ensure this work is being done in Georgia. Below is information written by Gwinnett SToPP that is included in their January blog.
Jan 19, 2018
Dignity in Schools Campaign members, NAACP Legal Defense Fund, and Partners for Each and Every Child launched the ESSA Engage for Equity campaign and pre-released its accompanying jointly developed Toolkit. The campaign is designed to empower students, parents and other stakeholders to hold conversations in their local school that can only positively impact education. This Toolkit provides resources to arm youth, parents and other stakeholders with vital information needed to make decisions that impact their schools.
Gwinnett SToPP will be work-shopping the Toolkit to obtain feedback from folks on the ground. Contact us to train your PTA or other organization on this invaluable resource.
Georgia’s ESSA State Plan was recently approved and now’s the time to make sure all stakeholders are prepared for the coming changes.
Jason has worked in education for over 15 years as a teacher, blogger and community advocate. He speaks and writes primarily about the need to improve education for Black boys, particularly increasing the number of Black male educators in schools. In addition to blogging here at EdLanta, Jason is also a featured writer at Education Post.