Tagged “Parent And Family Engagement”

Melissa Mellor

ASCD Shares Civic Learning Recommendations

ASCD Shares Civic Learning Recommendations

ASCD recently sent feedback to the U.S. Department of Education on reinvigorating civic learning and engagement across the country. This feedback is a response to the department's call for suggestions on four provisions in its road map for advancing civic learning (PDF).

Research and test scores show that our students lack knowledge of the U.S. government system and their civic responsibilities, but many schools struggle to prioritize civic learning amid competing academic concerns. ASCD believes that civic learning is an essential component of a whole child approach to education that gives students a voice in a safe and supportive environment and ensures that they understand their opportunities in and obligations to their schools, their communities, and the nation.

Read more »

Klea Scharberg

Support, Optimism, and Hope

No community is immune to the effects of traumatic events. Our ASCD community includes the students, teachers, and residents of Newtown, Conn. This morning we shared posts from our archives that speak to providing safe and connected learning environments. We hope the following resources from ASCD and our Whole Child Partners connect to educators, families, and communities' resilient spirit so that they can tap the resilient spirit in their students.

Read more »

Sean Slade

What’s in Our Control: Safer, Connected Environments

Almost no one has been unaffected by the events in Newtown, Conn., last week—especially if they are a teacher or parent or have kids who go to elementary school, as many of us do. It's hard to discuss and even harder to make any kind of sense out of what happened.

Today we highlight posts from our archives, the ASCD community, and our partner organizations that speak to how we can make our schools and communities safer and more connected. While we cannot immediately change policies that affect our schools and larger communities, we can strengthen our resolve to make sure that we create environments for our kids that are welcoming, supportive, and caring. The immediate reaction is to hunker down; however, as we hear so often, the best next steps are to open doors, re-engage and reconnect.

We hope the following pieces may resonate or help. Standing strong together and reminding ourselves that a connected community is a safer and friendlier community may be the best action we can take right now, and it's something we can have some control over.

Read more »

ASCD Whole Child Bloggers

School Psychology Awareness Week: Know Your Own Strengths

School Psychology Awareness Week - NASP

This week whole child partner National Association of School Psychologists is hosting School Psychology Awareness Week. Designed around the theme "Know Your Own Strengths. Discover them. Share them. Celebrate them.," this year's program looks to help students and schools find and celebrate their strengths in the school community, their academics, and their lives.

The program provides resources and activities member school psychologists can use to engage communities to help students find and develop their individual strengths. Families and educators can access resources year-round on resilience, back to school, behavior, diversity, health and wellness, crisis and safety, assessment and instruction, social and emotional development, special populations, and more.

ASCD Whole Child Bloggers

No Child Should Grow Up Hungry

We are proud to welcome Share Our Strength as a whole child partner. Share Our Strength's No Kid Hungry campaign aims to end childhood hunger in the United States. It connects kids in need with nutritious food and teaches their families how to cook healthy, affordable meals. The campaign also engages the public to make ending childhood hunger a national priority.

Read more »

Podcast Whole Child Podcast

Respecting and Reflecting School Culture

Download Podcast Now [Right-Click to Save]

A positive school culture is the cornerstone of a good school and the foundation for school improvement. School culture encompasses the schoolwide ethos and the culture of individual classrooms, high expectations for learning and achievement, a safe and caring environment, shared values and relational trust, a powerful pedagogy and curriculum, high student motivation and engagement, a professional faculty culture, and partnerships with families and the community. It is constantly being shaped through our interactions, individual identities, beliefs, traditions, experiences, and community diversity. Research shows that successful schools with positive, effective school cultures are places that foster teacher learning and motivate students to learn.

Many schools may be in the process of implementing a program or process to support a whole child approach to education. Other schools may be looking at how to sustain what has already been achieved or developed. Fully embedding a whole child approach into the culture so that it becomes an integral part of what we do and who we are as schools and communities is key to ensuring that each child is healthy, safe, engaged, supported, and challenged and prepared for their future college, career, and civic lives.

As Harvard educator Roland Barth once observed, "A school's culture has far more influence on life and learning in the schoolhouse than the state department of education, the superintendent, the school board, or even the principal can ever have."

In this episode of the Whole Child Podcast, Klea Scharberg, project manager for whole child programs at ASCD, talked with members of the Special Olympics National Youth Activation CommitteeSpecial Olympics Project UNIFY is a whole child partner—about what a safe and positive school culture means to them, student voice and leadership, and why they are committed to being agents of change for their communities and young people across the United States. You'll hear from

  • Daniel Fink, originally from Alaska and currently attending Washington State University;
  • Kelsey Foster, from South Carolina;
  • Heather Glaser, from Wyoming; and
  • Bernice Higa-French, from Hawaii.

How does the culture of your school and community affect the success of your students?

"It's not necessarily that something is different about the school. They don't have different curriculum that they teach—no, it's just that it's more integrated and inclusive. You can walk down the hallway and you're not afraid of talking to anyone because of their race or their background, or anything like that. ... You walk in and there's just a smile on your face—and you don't necessarily know why—and you want to know more about why [the school culture] is that way."

—Daniel Fink

ASCD Whole Child Bloggers

Engaging the Whole Community to Support Positive Bus Behavior

Jessica Bohn

Post submitted by Jessica Bohn, principal at Gibsonville Elementary School in Gibsonville, N.C. She has worked at all levels K–16, including as a university assistant director, assistant principal, district curriculum specialist, and science teacher. Bohn is a member of the ASCD Emerging Leaders Class of 2012 and is passionate about STEM education and 21st century learning.

If you are an educational leader, you know that promoting positive behavior on the school bus can be a challenge. Students are often tired, restless, and ready for unstructured play at the end of a school day. Last year, I was presented with the data that our buses were the location of the majority of our discipline referrals, and I wondered what I could do about it.

We are a Positive Behavior Intervention and Support (PBIS) school, but translating those practices to the school buses has been challenging. Principals do not often supervise bus drivers or establish bus routes, but they often bear the responsibility for student discipline on school buses. It is also important to acknowledge that the well-being of children as they arrive and depart from school can affect their outlook on the educational environment. I decided that I needed to engage our larger community in the discussion in order to understand the whole child and make a difference.

Read more »

Kristen Pekarek

American School Health Association Offers Free School Health Webinars

Schools play an important role in improving student health, social outcomes, and overall academic success. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, aside from families, schools have the most direct contact with more than 95 percent of U.S. young people ages 5–17 years, for 6 hours a day, and for up to 13 crucial years of their social, psychological, physical, and intellectual development.

Coordinated school health programs and policies are the most efficient means schools have to closing achievement gaps, reducing risk behaviors, and preventing serious health problems among students. Whole child partner the American School Health Association (ASHA) is offering free school health webinars this fall to engage audiences in the work of ASHA and the school health field. The webinars will run from September through the middle of November and cover current school health topics, ranging from implementing National Sexuality Education Standards to engaging parents in school health promotion. ASHA will be archiving the webinars and offering participants certified health education specialist credits and continuing education unit credits, depending on the topic.

Read more »

Molly McCloskey

Fast, Free, Online: Because You Can’t Wait to Get Better

ASCD School Improvement Tool

All educators want to improve what they do for kids, but they need help doing so. On a daily basis, we’re thinking, planning, and taking steps to improve school climate and culture, provide high-quality curriculum and instruction, be leaders, assess meaningfully, engage our families and communities, support our own professional development, build staff capacity, and more. How do we balance these multiple school improvement priorities in our schools and with one another?

Read more »

Whole Child Virtual Conference

Your Summer PD: Successful Schools

2012 ASCD Whole Child Virtual Conference

ASCD conducted its second Whole Child Virtual Conference in May. This free conference showcases schools, authors, and research about implementing a whole child approach for a worldwide audience. View and share archived session recordings, presenter handouts, and related resources at www.ascd.org/wcvirtualconference.

Gain further insight into what successful school sites are doing and simple steps your school can take to help implement, sustain, and build a culture of meeting the needs of the whole child through these presentations:

Read more »

Share |

Blog Archive

Blog Tags