In an effort to increase parental involvement and family and community engagement in Texas districts and schools, TEA requested that TXCC organize a Title I Statewide Parent Focus Group (SPFG) in November 2010. The group is comprised of stakeholders that include parents and principals from elementary, middle, and high schools; community service providers; education service center staff; and TEA staff.
The goal of the Title I SPFG is to promote engagement of parents and the community in sharing responsibility for student success. To accomplish its goal the members of the Title I SPFG share resources and best practices to promote engagement and use targeted messages to encourage parents and the community to become involved in the education system. Sharing peer-to-peer is a strategy used to build support at each stakeholder level (parents reach out to other parents, principals to principals, etc.).
During its first year, the Title I SPFG held quarterly meetings to establish its goals and to determine, plan, and implement actions targeted to have the greatest impact on increasing engagement. The group identified several messages to be used for communicating the importance of parental involvement and family and community engagement in supporting student learning. It also developed lists of individual and group actions that can be implemented to promote involvement. The meetings helped increase networking, collaboration, and understanding of the different roles and responsibilities for family and community engagement.
In December 2011, the Title I SPFG collaboratively developed and launched its first conference presentation, debuting the Title I SPFG messages at the Statewide Parental Involvement Conference in Dallas, Texas.
TXCC hosted the final meeting for Year 2 of the Title I Statewide Parent Focus Group. The meeting was held in the SEDL Boardroom on Thursday, September 6, 2012. Group members reflected on their affiliation with the SPFG and how it has positively impacted their work. SPFG members made recommendations for this work to continue and talked about how beneficial it has been for their school communities and programs.
In collaboration with TEA, the TXCC finalized arrangements for the Title I Statewide Parent Focus Group (SPFG) meeting, including recognition of the group’s members for their dedication and contributions throughout the life of the project.
TXCC and TEA rescheduled the quarterly meeting of the Title I Statewide Parent Focus Group to September 6, 2012. TEA and the TXCC continued planning on how to sustain family and community engagement to increase student achievement.
TXCC and TEA initiated planning for the quarterly meeting of the Title I Statewide Parent Focus Group in the SEDL Boardroom on July 17, 2012. The meeting will culminate and celebrate the second year of the Title I SPFG.
The quarterly meeting of the Title I Statewide Parent Focus Group was held May 3–4, 2012. TEA Parental Involvement Initiative staff and TXCC staff co-presented an overview of the Center on Innovation and Improvement’s Family and Community Engagement Handbook. TXCC staff introduced a feedback process for the group. Designed in collaboration with TEA, the feedback process provides TEA with information about its parental involvement/family and community engagement programs and initiatives. Feedback focused on their current usefulness and suggestions for enhancement.
TEA and the TXCC collaboratively planned for the May quarterly meeting of the Title I Statewide Parent Focus Group meeting. The meeting will focus on providing TEA with feedback on the use of the Family and Community Engagement Handbook, from the Center on Innovation and Improvement (CII), as well as TEA's Parental Involvement plan. In addition, with the Title I Statewide School Support/Parental Involvement Initiative, the TXCC co-presented at the Association for Compensatory Educators of Texas conference in Austin on the use of the CII handbook. The presentation was well received and over 70 handbooks were distributed to conference attendees.
TEA and the TXCC collaborated with the Title I Statewide Parent Focus Group to review feedback from a conference session conversation about challenges experienced and successful practices currently used to engage family and community in education. The results from the review will be shared with other educators, parents, and community members and will be used to inform future work of TEA and the focus group.
TEA and the TXCC collaboratively planned the March Title I Statewide Parent Focus Group's quarterly meeting. The focus group—composed of parents, principals, community members, and educators—advises TEA on issues related to family and community engagement. Information from a session conducted by the focus group members at the Statewide Parental Involvement Conference in Dallas was organized for analysis and review.
TEA and the TXCC attended the National Title I Conference in Seattle, Washington. Several sessions attended related to family and community engagement, including Moving Beyond Parent Involvement to Family & Community Engagement, an overview of the CII handbook, and Parent Engagement Takes Flight…Utilizing Data to Engage, Enable, and Empower Families. After the conference, plans were developed to share the information with educators in Texas.
The Title I Statewide Parent Focus Group facilitated roundtable discussions about family and community engagement during its workshop presentation at the Statewide Parental Involvement Conference. Information gathered during the workshop will be used to inform TEA about current practices, challenges, and opportunities experienced by family and community engagement practitioners and parent participants who attended the conference.
Title I Statewide Parent Focus Group in collaboration with TEA and the TXCC finalized the roundtable discussions with parents and educators for the December Statewide Parental Involvement Conference. The focal point will be the importance of family and community engagement as a strategy for student achievement.
TEA and the TXCC collaboratively planned for the development of roundtable discussions to be conducted by the Title I Statewide Parent Focus Group (SPFG) during the December 2011 Statewide Parental Involvement Conference. TXCC facilitated conference calls with the Title I SPFG members to develop the presentation.