Parent and Family Engagement, formerly Parental Involvement under No Child Left Behind, has been retitled under the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA), enacted on December 10, 2015. Parent and Family Engagement reflects the four principles upon which the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA), the nation's national education law and longstanding commitment to equal opportunity for all students, is based. These principles provide the framework through which families, educators and communities can work together to improve teaching and learning:
- accountability for results
- local control and flexibility
- expanded parental choice
- effective and successful programs that reflect scientifically-based research
Parent and Family Engagement also focuses on accountability between schools and parents for high student achievement, while offering parents important insight into their children's education, the professional qualifications of their child's teacher and the quality of the schools they attend.
Parent and Family Engagement in Law
Parent and Family Engagement is addressed in the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) Public Law 114-95 Section 1112, Local Educational Agency Plans; Section 1114, Schoolwide Programs; and Section 1116, Parent and Family Engagement.
Required Parent Notifications
TransACT ParentNotices include ESSA Parent Notifications and GenEd Parent Notifications. DESE provides this site free of charge to all public/charter schools, Education Service Cooperative, and DESE personnel in Arkansas. Your subscription gives you access to parent engagement guidance, as well as expertly written forms or notices that are required by your district, state, or federal government. The notices are in English and have already been translated into ten priority languages by certified translators. Arkansas educators may contact their district’s TransACT Administrator or email firstname.lastname@example.org and request an account. One valuable tool you will find is the ESSA Stakeholder Notifications, Checklist, and Timelines document which was designed to assist with the management and distribution of required notices within a district. (Search for document ACCT-A3 within the ParentNotices Collection.)
Parent and Family Engagement Planning Documents
As the Arkansas Department of Education (ADE) seeks to support schools and districts in planning efforts for engaging families and community, these documents serve as tools for considering each of the components required by State and Federal regulations. The way in which each school or district responds to each section and its components is to be determined by the committee members and leadership team. Submitting the district plan in Indistar is required. Submitting school plans in Indistar is optional, but encouraged. The district plan shall also be posted to the district website by August 1.
Please consider the following tools as samples for creating parent-friendly plans. Schools and districts are not required to use the sample template or guide.
Parent and Family Engagement Sample Surveys
Please consider the following sample surveys for evaluating the effectiveness of parent and family engagement plans. Schools and districts are not required to use the sample surveys.
For more information, please contact:
Arkansas Department of Education
Division of Elementary and Secondary Education
Public School Accountability
Four Capitol Mall, Mail Slot #26
Little Rock, AR 72201