Educare Family Voices: Engagement Takes a Village

Parents and staff from 13 Educare Schools participated in a historic event in Atlanta on March 9-10. The event, “Educare Family Voices: Engagement Takes a Village,” marked the first time that the Network brought parents from so many schools to speak to one another.

“We come from all over the country, but we have one thing in common: our shared Educare experience,” said Portia Kennel, executive director of the Educare Learning Network, as she welcomed participants to the event. “We want to build on that shared experience to figure out how to do our work even better for children and families in your communities.”

Family engagement has always been a core component of Educare because we know parents are essential champions of their children’s long-term success. “We see possibility in parents as much as in children,” Kennel said. “We can’t do the best we need to do for children unless we partner with their parents.”

In that spirit of partnership, the Educare Family Voices event brought parents and staff together to collect their ideas. The event was organized by the Network’s Family Engagement Workgroup, which has been working the last two years to inform the future of direction of family engagement at Educare schools. Parents appreciated the opportunity to contribute to the discussions and learn about efforts at other schools.

Martha Perez, a parent from Educare West DuPage, said that she learned a lot at the event that she will take back to her school. “I want to figure out ways to get more parents involved in our school,” Perez said.