Metro Schools Family Engagement Summit Welcomes Parents and Educators

Today Metro Schools presented the family engagement summit “Welcoming Schools, Welcoming Families” with many parents, educators and national guest speakers at the Martin Professional Development Center. The one-day seminar brought together 250 people from 115 different Metro Schools, 10 departments, 15 community organizations and three international organizations all working to help bring families and educators closer together.

“We are very fortunate to have so many families willing to do the hard work of getting involved in their schools,” said Gini Pupo-Walker, executive director of family and community partnerships at Metro Schools. “Engagement is one of the foundational building blocks of a great school, and working together we can make all schools welcoming places where parents are valued as active contributors to education.”

Seminars were focused on increasing the capacity of school-based staff to partner with families and community organizations for student success. There were 20 unique workshops to give practical strategies for outreach, communications and supports for families.

Metro Schools also released the Welcoming Schools Walkthrough Tool at the Summit. This diagnostic tool provides schools with the opportunity to evaluate family engagement practices, policies and communications. It outlines concrete strategies to create more welcoming school environments.

This year’s keynote speaker was Carrie Jasper, director of outreach to parents and families at the U.S. Department of Education. Other notable speakers included Jamie Farnsworth from NBC Universal and creator of the “Parent Tool Kit” website and mobile applications.