California Action Team For Partnerships:
A proposal to Mobilize School, Family and Community Partnerships to Close the Achievement Gap and Increase Graduation Rates
The California Action Team for Partnerships (CATP), composed of representatives from the CDE, federal , state, and regional projects/organizations, California State PTA, school district representatives, community and non-profit organizations, recognizes that schools, working alone, cannot close the achievement gap, bring all children to proficient levels and increase graduation rates. It is critical that we mobilize education’s important allies, our students’ families and their communities to work in partnerships with education to ensure that all students have equitable access to an excellent education and opportunities to become productive members of their community and society. The CATP recognizes the link between State Superintendent of Public Instruction Jack O’ Connell’s initiative to close the achievement gap and the importance of engaging families in partnerships with education to assist with creating conditions necessary for closing the achievement gap and placing California’s students on a pathway to proficiency and academic success. The California Department of Education P-16 Council has identified four factors which impact student learning and efforts to close the achievement gap : Access, Culture/Climate, Expectations and Strategies (ACES). The California ATP believes that involving and engaging parents in the education of their children enhances the successful implementation of interventions and other efforts to reform education for children. THE CATP met during May and again in July 2008 with CDE’s P-16 Council staff to share the California Action Plan for Partnerships and to align its goals for parental and community involvement with the goals of the P-16 Council. To assist the CDE Title I Programs and Partnerships Office and the P-16 Council, the California Action Team for Partnerships developed a statewide Action Plan for Partnerships. The plan incorporates technical assistance and professional development and aligns the parallel goals of all the involvement stakeholders. The foundation of the California Action Plan for Partnerships is based on three R’s: Research, Requirements and Resources. There is significant research which strongly links specific types of parental involvement to higher achievements rates of school, family and community partnerships directly to schools’ academic goals for students to support increased achievement, the National Network for Partnerships (NNPS) Framework for Partnerships. The California Action Plan for Partnerships takes into account both federal and state parental involvement requirements established to ensure the meaningful involvement of parents. The plan proposes that existing resources, including
Educational resources and human resources—the energy and good will of parents and community members—be coordinated into a systematic and statewide initiative for establishing productive school , family and community partnerships at three levels— State , Regional , and Local. The California Action Plan for Partnerships recommends implementation of a research – based approach , the National Network of Partnership Schools Framework for Partnerships . The NNPS approach raises parental involvement programs from being the responsibility of a single person to being the responsibility of a team of persons and it establishes systems to evaluate parental involvement program quality and progress over time. The NNPS approach has four components : 1. An Action Team for Partnerships 2. The NNPS Framework of the 6 Types of Parental Involvement (aligned with the California State Board Policy on Parental Involvement http://www.cde/ca.gov/be/ms/po/policy89-01-sept1994.asp) 3. A one year Action Plan For Partnerships that support goals of the Single Plan for Student Achievement. 4. Evaluation of the progress and quality of the Action Plan for Partnerships
NCLB Title 1 Part A SEC. 1118 (2)(B) requires that (LEAs) provide the coordination , technical assistance, and other support necessary to assist participating schools in planning and implementing effective parent involvement activities to improve student academic achievement and school performance. California Education Code requires school districts to establish programs to encourage parental involvement. Section 11502 (e) lists as a purpose of the legislation “ to integrate parent involvement programs …into the school’s master plan for academic accountability.” [EC 11500-11506] Action Requested: The California Action Team for Partnerships (CATP) requests the assistance of the State Superintendent of Public Instruction in launching a statewide partnership initiative to include the following components or components that the State Superintendent believes would be the most beneficial in closing the achievement gap, increasing graduation rates, and placing California’s students on a pathway to proficiency and academic success: 1. Create opportunities to support, publicize and disseminate information for a California partnerships initiative, the California Action Plan for Partnerships to recognize and showcase successful partnership programs in districts across the state. 2. Support collaboration of the California Action Team for Partnerships (CATP) and the P-16 Council staff to ensure alignment of efforts at all levels. 3. Add specific language to the Single Plan for Student Achievement (SPSA) to include family involvement as one of the required goals.
4. Recommend the National Network of Partnership Schools Framework for Partnerships or other research bases approaches for integrated parent involvement programs into the school’s master plan for academic accountability per Education Code 11502. 5. Ensure that key CDE staff across divisions are provided with information and professional development to support the NNPS approach for organizing effective school, family and community partnerships linked to directly to schools’ academic goals for students. 6. Ensure that information and professional development are provided , as part of CDE’s technical assistance for LEAs , on the NNPS approach for organizing effective school, family and community partnerships linked directly to schools’ academic goals for students (with priority for technical assistance given to Program Improvement districts). 7. Identify a selected number of Program Improvement districts willing to participate in a pilot program using the NNPS approach and redirect resources to support technical assistance for the pilot districts. 8. Request that each County Superintendent of Schools identify a contact person to be part of a Regional Partnership Network for their Superintendent’s Region. 9. Provide CDE support for preparation and submission of state Parent Involvement Standards for consideration and approval by State Board of Education.