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In a school system, parents and the community are part of the key figures as they play a vital role in the running of the school operations. Therefore, their involvement is quite indispensable in the realization of the school vision. Parenting skills and knowledge, communication, volunteering, supporting learning at home and decision making and collaborating with the community are ways in which a school can enhance parents' involvement in its activities.
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To begin with, a school can encourage parenting skills and knowledge in various ways. Among the strategies of promoting this partnership are surveying parents, consulting parents and other community members on best ways reaching out to parents, organizing home visiting sessions, providing information on child development and offering school space for parenting education lessons in the school (Morrison, 2009). Moreover, parents sharing nights and insistence on their attendance of the community events and fairs. For instance, by providing posters, tip sheets ad welcoming messages to these events.
Communication of between the school and home can be enhanced in school through certain ways. Sending report cards to the parents from school facilitates this communication. It also entails emphasizing on the significance of the involvement in school, sharing school expectation and soliciting financial aid in order to improve the communication of to the parents (Davis, 2000). Holding meetings and academic days also enable the school to communicate efficiently with school parents. For instance, a teacher can send the learners' report cards containing the children's performance of a certain examination.
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In addition, involvement of the parents in school activities is enhanced through volunteer work both in school and in the community. In school, teachers can encourage children and the parents to take part voluntarily in school activities. The school can provide enough time for volunteer work, appoint a volunteer coordinator, providing volunteers and organizing trips for both parents and children (Tara, 2011). For instance, by inviting parents and children to take lunch together and ride in the school bus.
Moreover, parents can participate in the school activities through helping their children with learning at home. Some of the strategies used here involve encouraging the parents to work with their children, reading their newsletters and work, suggesting ways in which parents can improve their children's skills, for instance, mathematics, writing and reading skills. Moreover, schools can organize family science, reading or writing nights in school in order to encourage parents work with their chhildren at home. Also, teachers can insist on parent's input in the homework, and send those newsletters (Dietz, 2005).
As one of the integral components of the school, parents views are highly indispensable in any decision making process in the school. Parents should also be evaluated after meetings, recognized and awarded for their efforts (Davis, 2000). Offering leadership training for teachers and parents, conducting a parent check-in before making decisions on drug abuse, vandalism or violence in school is also crucial. The school can also improve the decision and advocacy partnerships through solving of conflicts by appointing a facilitator to be in charge.
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Community collaborations in the school are very vital because they help in enhancing favorable conditions that are essential in meeting the children's needs and achievement of the school's objectives. Therefore, schools can improve these connections through holding meetings in schools, inviting businesses to the school events, acknowledging the partnerships publicly, sending appreciation notes to participants of the school projects, and getting ideas and responses from the community to improve the outreach activities (Tara, 2011). For example, during the recognition and performance celebrations, schools should invite organizations, agencies and foundations.
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