DMPS District Title 1 Parent Involvement Policy
Title I Parent Involvement Program
Des Moines Public Schools
The Des Moines Public Schools’ (DMPS) Title I Parent Involvement Program provides the opportunity for parents to be involved jointly in the development of the Title I Schoolwide plans and in the school’s review process for the purpose of school improvement. Recognizing that parental involvement is the key to academic achievement, we seek to involve parents in an effective home-school partnership that will provide the best possible education for our students. The district provides coordination, technical assistance and other supports necessary to aid in the planning and implementation of parent involvement activities.
The district encourages parent involvement and supports this partnership through providing information about standards and assessments; providing training and materials for parents to help their children; educating school personnel about involving parents and the value of parent contributions; and developing roles for community organizations and businesses to work with parents and schools.
1. This jointly developed and agreed upon written policy is distributed to all parents and family members through district and school websites.
2. The district will provide technical assistance and support to schools in planning and implementing effective parent and family engagement activities to improve student academic achievement and school performance through professional development regarding parent and family engagement. The district will partner with community groups as a means to engage families more creatively and successfully.
3. The district will work to find ways to work cooperatively with other Federal, state, and local programs. The Title I program will work with local public preschool programs, Headstart programs, local library programs, and special education programs (IDEA).
4. The district conducts an annual evaluation of the content and effectiveness for the Parent and Family Engagement Policy through input from each Title I school. The evaluation includes parents in a meaningful manner. Parents and families have a voice. The evaluations will target at least three key areas: barriers to greater participation by parents and family members, needs of parents and family members to assist with the learning of their children, and strategies to support successful school and family interactions.
5. The district uses the findings for the annual evaluation to design evidenced-based strategies for more effective parent and family engagement. The evaluation results will help uncover best practices that are working and adapt those ideas to the district and individual school needs.
6. The school involves parents and family members in activities of the school. Each school has established a Schoolwide Program advisory committee including a sufficient number and representative group of parents or family members to adequately represent the needs to the population. This group reviews and provides suggestions, as needed, for revision of the DMPS Parent and Family Engagement Policy.
7. At least one annual meeting will be held to inform parents and family members of the school’s participation in the Title I program and to explain the requirements of the program and their right to be involved.
8. Parent and family meetings, including parent conferences, will be held at different times during the day and Title I funds may be used to pay reasonable and necessary expenses associated with parent and family engagement activities, including transportation, childcare, or home visit expenses to enable parents to participate in school-related meetings and training sessions.
9. The school will involve parents in the planning, review, and improvement of the school’s Title I program providing the opportunity for them to give input and feedback.
10. In a schoolwide program plan, parents are asked to be involved in the joint development of the building’s schoolwide plan through such things as in-person meetings, surveys, and electronic feedback as appropriate.
11. Parents and family members of participating children are given assistance in understanding the Title I program, with timely information about the Title I program. Through annual meetings and parent-teacher conferences, the school will provide parents and family members of participating children with a description and explanation of the curriculum in use at the school, the forms of academic assessment used to measure student progress, and the proficiency levels students are expected to meet. Parents and family members receive an explanation of the school’s performance profile, the forms of academic assessment used to measure student progress, and the expected proficiency levels in the annual progress report distributed to all stockholders in the spring of the year, through individual reports given to parents at conference time, and through report cards.
12. If requested by parents, the school will provide opportunities for regular meetings to formulate suggestions and to participate, as appropriate, in decisions relating to the education of their children, and respond to any such suggestions as soon as practicably possible.
13. If the schoolwide plan is not satisfactory, parents of participating students may comment. Comments may be made in writing to the school principal.
14. A jointly developed school/parent compact outlines how parents and family members, the entire school staff, and students all share responsibility for improved student achievement.
15. Parents will be notified of this policy in an understandable and uniform format and, to the extent practicable, provided in a language the parents can understand. The policy will be provided in English and Spanish and will be free of educational jargon.
16. In order to ensure effective involvement of parents and to support a partnership among the school involved, parents, and the community to improve student academic achievement, each school and local educational agency shall:
a. Provide assistance to parents in understanding challenging State academic standards, State and local academic assessments, the requirements of this part, and how to monitor a child’s progress and work with educators to improve the achievement of their children;
b. Provide materials and training to help parents to work with their children to improve their children’s achievement, such as literacy training and using technology (including education about the harms of copyright piracy), as appropriate, to foster parental involvement;
c. Educate teachers, specialized instructional support personnel, principals, and other school leaders, and other staff, with the assistance of parents, in the value and utility of contributions of parents, and in how to reach out to, communicate with, and work with parents as equal partners, implement and coordinate parent programs, and build ties between parents and the school;
d. Coordinate and integrate parent involvement programs and activities with other Federal, State, and local programs, including public preschool programs, and conduct other activities, such as parent resource centers, that encourage and support parents in more fully participating in the education of their children;
e. Ensure that information related to school and parent programs, meetings, and other activities is sent to the parents of participating children in a format and, to the extent practicable, in a language the parents can understand; and
f. Provide such other reasonable support for parental involvement activities under this section as parents may request.
17. The school, to the extent practicable, will provide opportunities for the informed participation of parents and family members (including parents and family members who have limited English proficiency, parents and family members with disabilities, and parents and family members of migratory children) by providing information and required school reports in a format and language the parties can understand.