When it comes to helping children in your learning program achieve academic success, strong partnerships are incredibly important. And there’s no partnership more valuable than the one you build with families — but you may have to make the first move!
According to studies from Understood, UnidosUS, and the National Parent Teacher Association, more than 40 percent of parents don’t believe they understand how well their child is achieving academically, but more importantly, they aren’t sure how to start a conversation with their child’s teacher about the challenges their child may face.
Families should always be a part of the school community and receive regular communication that encourages partnership. Luckily, by sharing data with parents, educators can build strong partnerships with families and help them feel more included, connected, and empowered.
Here are a few tips to share data effectively with families and build strong partnerships:
Host a virtual data day for families.
This is your chance to help families understand why data — and the assessments you use to gather data — are so important. During your virtual data day, invite families to an online session where you provide a glossary of terms in family-friendly language and share an overview of national, state, and local data. Also, review your assessment schedule and rationale for each set of tests you’ll conduct. Most importantly, leave ample time for questions — there may be a lot!
After hosting your virtual data day, you and your learning program families will be more confident when the time comes to share data specific to each child.
Break the ice.
Sharing assessment data is the perfect time to strengthen your bond with families; and kicking off your meeting on a positive note will only make that bond stronger. Fill families in on all the milestones their child has reached and all the goals they’ve achieved before diving into areas where their child is struggling.
Be brief and positive.
Short conversations about data and assessments tend to be the most effective. Remind families more assessments are on the horizon and not to be discouraged if their child is struggling. And always end on a positive note, circling back to their child’s strengths.
Thank families for taking the time to meet with you. By showing gratitude, families will know that you value their time, which will make your partnership with them even stronger.
Make data easy to access.
If you’re using Ignite by Hatch, it’s easy for families to access data about their child’s progress, learning milestones, and achievements through Ignite’s parent portal. Families will also have access to Family Connections, which are standards-based experiences designed specifically for families to use at home with children.
To learn more about how to effectively share data with families and build even stronger partnerships, check out our webinar, “Sharing Data with Families.”