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Office of the Inspector General Internal Audit
Prospective Analysis of Parent Centers
September 28, 2012
Los Angeles City Board of Education
Office of the Inspector General
Mònica Garcìa, President Tamar Galatzan Bennett Kayser Nury Martinez Marguerite Poindexter LaMotte Richard Vladovic Steve Zimmer
Members of the Board
John E. Deasy, Ph.D
September 28, 2012 Krisztina Tokes Director of Asset Management Facilities Services Division 23rd FLR Roger Finstad Director of Maintenance and Operations Facilities Services Division 22nd FLR Los Angeles Unified School District 333 South Beaudry Avenue Los Angeles, CA 90017 Dear Ms. Casillas, Ms. Tokes and Mr. Finstad: This is our report of the Prospective Analysis of Parent Centers. These are the report’s key sections: • • • • •
Inspector General, Interim Maria Casillas Chief of School, Family & Parent Community Services Los Angeles Unified School District 1360 W. Temple Street Los Angeles, CA 90026
The Executive Summary describes the scope of the analysis and provides an overview of what was found. Benchmarking – Presents information on Parent Centers from various unified school districts. Part I – Describes the current status of LAUSD Parent Center enhancements in Board District 5 using Board Member Priority Funds. Part II – Describes the current status of LAUSD Parent Center enhancements districtwide using bond funds from the Facilities Services Division Strategic Execution Plan. Appendix A contains samples of parent surveys for Parents Centers. Appendix B contains a sample of a survey that determines the number of Parent Centers districtwide. Annex A lists others receiving copies of the report. Annex B lists the members of the audit team.
I appreciate the courtesies and cooperation extended to us during the audit. Sincerely,
Katharine Monishi Interim Deputy Inspector General, Internal Audit
Alfred Rodas Inspector General, Interim Cc: Mark Hovatter, Interim Chief Facilities Executive Jaime Aquino, Deputy Superintendent of Instruction
333 South Beaudry Avenue, 12th Floor, Los Angeles, California 90017 Telephone: (213) 241-7700 Fax: (213) 241-6826
About the Office of the Inspector General
The Office of the Inspector General reports directly to the Board of Education. We conduct independent audits, reviews and investigations of District operations, contracts and vendors in order to:
Find ways to improve processes, programs, functions and activities Provide information that supports effective decision making Identify real or potential misuse of District resources Prevent and detect waste, fraud and abuse within the District
Through our work, we strive to encourage a culture of accountability, transparency, collaboration and excellence and to assist the Board and the Superintendent in their efforts to provide a high quality education for the students and parents of the Los Angeles Unified School District.
Why did the OIG do this audit?
Parent Centers help parents to expand their capacity to support their children academically, emotionally, socially and intellectually within school districts. This prospective analysis was performed to provide the District with more vital information about this topic. What was the main objective? To give the District more information about the use of Parent Centers at other school districts throughout the state and to compare other Parent Centers nationwide. How does this audit support OIG Goals?
Find ways to improve processes, programs, functions and activities Provide information that supports effective decision making
What District key strategies does this audit support?
Provide a portfolio of high quality schools for youth, families and communities Operate an effective, efficient, and transparent organization in order to assure the public trust
TABLE OF CONTENTS Executive Summary .................................................................................................................1 Background .................................................................................................................................5 Benchmarking ..........................................................................................................................14 Part I: LAUSD Parent Centers Enhancements in Board District 5: Board Member Priority Funds ........................................................................................................27 Part II: LAUSD Parent Center Enhancements Districtwide: Bond Funds from Facilities Services Division Strategic Execution Plan ................................................32 Appendices
A – Samples of Surveys for Parent Centers ..............................................................................37 B – Example of a Survey on determining the number of Parent Centers .................................41
A – Distribution List .................................................................................................................43 B – Audit Team .........................................................................................................................44
This report contains the results of our audit of the Prospective Analysis of Parent Centers. A Prospective Analysis is a type of audit project that provides information about potential risks that may occur in the future along with possible actions that the District may take in response to those risks. Research has shown that Parent Centers are a critical and essential link toward creating an integrated and inclusive school environment for parents. A well run Parent Center may serve as a teacher, social worker, and parent advocate: Parent Centers share an important role in breaking down barriers, addressing issues of parent self-esteem, and providing knowledge and information to parents in a language they can understand1. The No Child Left Behind Act, Title I Part A was designed to help close the achievement gap between disadvantaged and minority students and their peers. Parental involvement has been the centerpiece of Title I, specifically, Section 1118 which stresses development of parental involvement plans and building parents’ capacity for using effective practices to improve their own children’s academic achievement. Observation: At this time, it is estimated that LAUSD has approximately 500 Parent Centers2. Like many other schools districts nationwide, LAUSD does not have a precise count of Parent Centers at each specific school site. This report focuses on the upgrade and improvements of Parent Centers funded by Board Member Priority Funds and school construction bonds funds.
To perform a prospective analysis on the use of Parent Centers at other school districts throughout the state and to compare other Parent Centers nationwide.
Summary of Research
5 out of 8 school districts reviewed in this analysis have a Central Parent Center(s), in addition to the school site’s Parent Centers. 3 out of 8 school districts have established a Parent University. A Parent University empowers, engages, and connects families to school district and community services and programs. (For more detailed information please see page 17) In school districts we interviewed and surveyed across the nation, one of the most significant challenges to operate and maintain a Parent Center is funding. (Per stakeholder views, LAUSD also has the same challenges). The following challenges were noted in our survey:
http://www.lausd.net/parent-services/index_files/Page543.htm LAUSD Parents as Equal Partners in the Education on their Children, Final Report, March 10, 2011, pg 12
o Adequate funding to hire staff for each Parent Center such as parent coordinator or liaison; o Provision of childcare to parents attending workshops or classes; o Providing services to parents who speak multiple languages and lack of translators. STATUS OF LAUSD PARENT CENTERS In support of the District’s commitment to increasing parent and family and community engagement and the implementation of the Board adopted resolution, Parents as Equal Partners in the Education of Their Children, the Superintendent has upgraded and improved Parent Centers throughout the District. The Board has approved 573 Parent Center upgrades since April 2011. The status of those Parent Centers are as follows4: 21 Parent Centers have been completed which were all funded by Board Member Priority Funds. 9 Parent Centers are in progress and are currently being upgraded. 27 Parent Centers have not been started. The average cost of each Parent Center funded by the $20 million allocation is $102,045. It is estimated that 196 Parent Centers will be upgraded with the $20 million bond fund allocation. The table below describes the overall progress made across Board Member Districts.
Board Member District Student Population per BM District6 Completed & upgraded Parent Centers7 In Progress8 Have not been started9 Total BMD 1* 75,740 BMD 2* 108,579 BMD 3* 94,397 BMD 4* 61,202 BMD 55 104,841 BMD 6* 97,330 BMD 7* 109,798
0 0 4 4
0 0 3 3
0 0 3 3
0 0 3 3
21 9 4 34
0 0 4 4
0 0 6 6
*The funds used for these projects come from the $20 million allocation.
A more detailed discussion can be found in pages 31-37 that discusses the status of Parent Centers in greater detail.
34 Parent Centers were funded by Board Member Priority Funds and 23 are funded by the $20 million allocation approved on June 14, 2011 4 As of June 11, 2012 5 Board Member Priority funds were used for these projects 6 FY 2011-2012 and the number includes charter schools 7 As of 6/11/12 8 ibid 9 ibid
Conclusion: Our prospective analysis found that the uses of Parent Centers at other school districts are similar to LAUSD except for the establishment of a centralized Parent Center and Parent University. However, with the initiative of improving and upgrading existing Parent Centers throughout the District, this should benefit schools as well as the feeder schools surrounding the community. Research on Parent Centers has shown that Parent Centers and activities provided at the centers serve a valuable purpose in engaging parents; as a result it tends to have a significant and positive effect on children’s grades and attendance. With the support from the Parent Community Services Branch, the recommendations contained in the Parents as Equal Partners in the Education of Their Children Taskforce Report and if schools adopt well designed practices to engage families, Parent Center education can result in long-lasting positive effects on improving student achievement in K-12 grades.
Possible risks associated with future Parent Centers: Parent Centers may not be used for the intended purposes if not monitored. Existing network infrastructure at schools may not support the equipment such as laptops provided by the upgrade and improvement projects initiative. Recruiting and engaging parents as volunteers at middle schools and high schools may be difficult to accomplish, especially if schools do not build partnerships with families and address their concerns and honor their contributions.
Next Steps: Actions the District Should Consider
The following actions should be considered by the Parent Community Services Branch and all stakeholders to mitigate potential risks identified in this report. A written response is not required for these actions, however the actions should be discussed and taken into consideration for future planning of Parent Centers at LAUSD.
Ensure that the existing network infrastructure at schools with Parent Centers support the equipment that is being provided by the District through the upgrade and improvement projects initiative. Ensure that the objectives and goals of the District’s Parents as Equal Partners in the Education of Their Children Resolution are conveyed to community members on the purpose of Parent and Family Centers. Consider adding to the schoolwide survey the question, “How can a Parent Center be more effective” or developing a separate survey to obtain this information. Consider developing a districtwide Parent University. Consider implementing a survey similar to the one presented in “Appendix B” to determine the number of Parent Centers districtwide in lieu of physically visiting schools.
Scope and Methodology
We conducted this prospective analysis in accordance with generally accepted government auditing standards. The audit covered the period from April 1, 2011 to April 30, 2012. In order to address the analysis objectives, we performed certain procedures, which included, but were not limited to the following: Reviewed relevant LAUSD policies and procedures. Reviewed applicable State laws and regulations. Researched Parent Centers throughout the country. Performed walkthroughs with key contacts to obtain an understanding of the process behind Parent Center upgrades. Benchmarked the use of Parent Centers with other school districts in California and nationwide. Interviewed LAUSD stakeholders. Surveyed and interviewed administrators of other school districts within California and the nation. Visited the model Parent Centers within LAUSD.
We performed the audit from May 21, 2012 to July 24, 2012.
What is a Parent Center10? Research has shown that Parent Centers are a critical and essential link toward creating an integrated and inclusive school environment. A well run Parent Center may serve as a teacher, social worker, and parent advocate; Parent Centers have an important role in breaking down barriers, addressing issues of parent self-esteem, and providing knowledge and information to parents in a language they can understand. Parent Centers provide a safety net for parents to gain know-how across a broad spectrum without embarrassment, provide basic language and social skills and can help parents assimilate to a new culture. The Parent Center also provides a portal, which links the surrounding community to the school and vice-versa. In short, the Parent Center is a critical enabler at schools to help parents expand their capacity to support their children emotionally, socially, and intellectually. Studies have found a positive and convincing relationship between family involvement and benefits for students, including improved academic achievement. This relationship holds across families of all economic, racial/ethnic, and educational backgrounds and for students at all ages. We reviewed various studies and found the following documented benefits of Parent Centers for students:11 • • • • • • Higher grade point averages and scores on standardized tests or rating scales Enrollment in more challenging academic programs More classes passed and credits earned Better attendance Improved behavior at home and at school Better social skills and adaptation to school
Does offering workshops at school or Parent Centers enhance parents’ skills to help their children12? Researchers found that: •
Students with more highly involved parents were more likely to gain in both reading and math than children with less involved parents. This finding held
http://www.lausd.net/parent-services/index_files/Page543.htm A New Wave of Evidence the Impact of School, Family and Community Connections on Student Achievement, Southwest Educational Development Laboratory, Annual Synthesis 2002; PG 24 12 A New Wave of Evidence the Impact of School, Family and Community Connections on Student Achievement, Southwest Educational Development Laboratory, Annual Synthesis 2002; PG 28
across all income and education levels. Younger students (grades 2–4) made greater gains than older students (grades 5–8). Parents were more likely to be involved when their children were in elementary school (grades 2–4) than in middle or high school. Students from lower-income families made fewer gains than students from higher income families, no matter how involved their families. However, low-income students with more involved parents made greater gains than low-income students with less involved parents. A family’s income level did not affect its level of involvement. Low-income families were as likely to attend workshops regularly as higher-income families.
Support from the Parent Centers may have provided parents with the skills and the desire to remain involved in their children’s education and to monitor their school accomplishments.13 The number of activities in which parents took part had a longer-lasting effect than frequency of participation. More activities were associated with higher scores on reading tests in both kindergarten and eighth grade, less time in special education, and lower rates of grade retention. Specifically, participation in five parent activities was related to a three-month increase in kindergarten reading achievement and a seven-month increase in eighth-grade reading achievement. Students with parents involved in many activities were also 39 percent less likely to be held back. These findings held across all family backgrounds.14 Early childhood, preschool, and kindergarten programs that train parents to work with their children at home tend to have significant, positive effects. Children’s grades and ratings from teachers tend to improve the longer they are in the program, and they make greater gains than children not in the program. The studies that compared levels of involvement found that achievement increased directly with the extent to which parents were engaged in the program. Children from all family backgrounds and income levels made gains. In some cases the children having the most difficulty in school made the greatest gains15.
A New Wave of Evidence the Impact of School, Family and Community Connections on Student Achievement, Southwest Educational Development Laboratory, Annual Synthesis 2002; PG 153 14 A New Wave of Evidence the Impact of School, Family and Community Connections on Student Achievement, Southwest Educational Development Laboratory, Annual Synthesis 2002; PG 152
A New Wave of Evidence the Impact of School, Family and Community Connections on Student Achievement, Southwest Educational Development Laboratory, Annual Synthesis 2002; PG 29
Older children benefit as well. Such simple programs as weekly homework assignments in which students engage their parents are linked to improved grades for elementary and middle grade students. One study shows that if schools fully adopt well-designed practices to engage families, their students’ test scores tend to rise and attendance improves. One of the more noteworthy comments we received in an interview with a California school district about the benefits of Parent Centers is shown below.
“Parent Centers serve as a valuable purpose in that parents have a place to call of their own on a campus. Anyone can call a room a Parent Center, what is more important is how a Parent Center is used and what types of activities, events, trainings, etc. are available to families that can make a difference in the lives of students and that translates to improved outcomes for children” -Parent Center Program Manager at a California school district
Board Resolutions and Amendments Relating to Parent Centers
The following is a timeline of Los Angeles Unified School District’s commitment to increase parent, family and community engagement.
•The Board approved Parents as Equal Partners in the Education of Their Children Resolution which directed the development, delivery and implementation of a variety of items aimed to increase parent engagement and ultimately student achievement.
December 14, 2010
March 10, 2011
•Parents as Equal Partners in the Education of Their Children Resolution Taskforce report was published.
April 26, 2011
•The Board of Education approved 5 Parent and Family Center upgrade and improvement projects using Board Member Priority Funds.
May 24, 2011
•The Board of Education approved an additional 29 Parent and Family Center upgrade and improvement projects using Board Member Priority Funds.
June 14, 2011
•The Board of Education amended the FSD SEP to allocate $20 million for the development of Parent and Family Center upgrade and improvement projects. This action was taken to support the District’s commitment to increasing parent, family and community engagement and implementation of the Board-adopted Parents as Equal Partners in the Education of Their Children Resolution
February 14, 2012
•Board of Education amended the FSD SEP to define and approve 22 Parent and Family Center upgrade and improvement projects. All funding comes from the $20 million allocation.
April 10, 2012
•Board of Education amended the FSD SEP to define and approve 1 Parent and Family Center upgrade and improvement project . All funding comes from the $20 million allocation.
On December 14, 2010, the Board approved a resolution titled Parents as Equal Partners in the Education of Their Children Resolution which directed the development, delivery and implementation of a variety of items aimed to increase parent engagement and ultimately student achievement. Under the terms of the resolution, a taskforce was established and tasked with developing a District-wide Parents’ Bill of Rights & Responsibilities and creating a framework of viable delivery models for parents and family centers and the implementation of a District Family Support Network. When complete, the Parents’ Bill of Rights & Responsibilities; will serve as a tool to improve parental engagement and a guide for the 2011-2014 Strategic Plan for Parental Involvement. The establishment of a District Family Support Network that has a clear connection with school site parent and family centers is intended to remove barriers to meaningful parent engagement and increase family wrap-around services and trainings.16 On March 10, 2011, the Parents as Equal Partners in the Education of Their Children Resolution Taskforce report was published. The report presented recommendations agreed upon by the taskforce for four working groups: (i) the District Parents’ Bill of Rights and Responsibilities, (ii) The Parent and Family Center Resource Curriculum; (iii) the Parent and Family Center Accountability Matrix; and (iv) the District Family Support Network and Delivery Model. The work of the Taskforce is to ensure that parental engagement plays an integral part in the educational experience of the LAUSD children. LAUSD will develop an internal ad-hoc committee that will document and implement a plan of action to insure the recommendations of the working groups are implemented within a three year period. On April 26, 2011, the Board of Education amended the Facilities Services Division Strategic Execution Plan to add Parent and Family Center upgrades and improvements at five schools. The projects were funded by Board Member Priority funds in the amount of $283,507. The Board Member’s intent for the five Parent and Family Center projects proposed was to serve as the school site central access point facility model for the entire District and support the implementation of a Family Support Network.17 The Parent and Family Center upgrade includes minor renovations, upgrades and equipping the facility with furniture, fixtures and equipment including technology, children’s corner and signage. On May 24, 2011, the Board of Education amended the FSD SEP to add 47 Alteration and Improvements projects. Of those 47 projects, 29 were improvements to existing Parent Centers. The projects were funded by Board Member Priority funds in the amount of $1,776,073. The Parent and Family Center upgrade includes minor renovations, upgrades and equipping the facility with furniture, fixtures and equipment including technology, children’s corner and signage.18 On June 14, 2011, the Board of Education amended the FSD SEP to allocate $20 million for the development of parent and family center upgrade and improvement projects. This action was taken to support the District’s commitment to increasing parent, family and community engagement and implementation of the Board-adopted Parents as Equal Partners in the
Los Angeles Unified School District, Board of Education Report 341-10/11, Facilities Services Division and Parent Community Services Branch; June 14, 2011; PGS 1-2 17 Los Angeles Unified School District, Board of Education Report 288-10/11, Facilities Services Division; April 26, 2011; PGS 1, 3 18 Los Angeles Unified School District, Board of Education Report 340-10/11, Facilities Services Division; May 24, 2011;PG 1
Education of Their Children Resolution.19 Investing bond funds into upgrade and improvement projects that provide schools with an enhanced parent and family center will provide the welcoming environment for which engagement can occur and student achievement can be supported.20 On February 14, 2012 the Board of Education amended the FSD SEP to define and approve 22 parent and family center upgrades and improvement projects.21 On April 10, 2012 the Board of Education amended the FSD SEP to define and approve 1 parent and family center upgrade and improvement project at Miramonte Elementary School. The FSD component of these commitments is its role in creating and executing improvement projects that provide schools with new or enhanced parent and family center facilities that reflects the central role of parents and families in education and from which engagement can occur.22 Investments in parent and family center facilities will be based on District-wide needs for parental engagement with the greatest need being determined by data including API and other indicators. The identification and development of parent and family center upgrade and improvement projects is being led by the Parent Community Services Branch (PCSB) and FSD with support from school site personnel, parents, Local District Superintendent’s offices and Board Member offices.23 Projects will be developed to upgrade and improve existing parent and family centers and to repurpose available facilities capacity to create a parent and family center. Project scopes are developed based on PCSB parent and family center facilities standards, and may include minor renovations, upgrades and equipping the facility with furniture, fixtures and equipment such as technology and signage. Staff may also pursue the possibility of creating additional facility capacity to enable a new parent and family center to be established, as well as improvement to existing centers to create an outside entrance/exit. Project scopes and budgets will vary based on general parent and family center standards and the conditions at each school.24 The facility improvements that will be made in parent and family centers will enhance each school site’s ability to develop and deliver parent training and programming that expands parent capacity to support student learning at home and quality instruction at school.25
Los Angeles Unified School District, Board of Education Report 142-11/12, Facilities Services Division and Parent Community Services Branch; February 14, 2012; PG 1 20 Los Angeles Unified School District, Board of Education Report 341-10/11, Facilities Services Division and Parent Community Services Branch; June 14, 2011; PG 3 21 Los Angeles Unified School District, Board of Education Report 142-11/12, Facilities Services Division and Parent Community Services Branch; February 14, 2012; PG 1 22 Los Angeles Unified School District, Board of Education Report 341-10/11, Facilities Services Division and Parent Community Services Branch; February 14, 2012; PG 2 23 Los Angeles Unified School District, Board of Education Report 341-10/11, Facilities Services Division and Parent Community Services Branch; June 14, 2011; PG 2 24 Los Angeles Unified School District, Board of Education Report 341-10/11, Facilities Services Division and Parent Community Services Branch; June 14, 2011; PG 2 25 Los Angeles Unified School District, Board of Education Report 142-11/12, Facilities Services Division and Parent Community Services Branch; February 14, 2012; PG 1
Parent Community Services Branch26
The Parent Community Services Branch (“PCSB”) is dedicated to expanding and deepening parent engagement throughout LAUSD. Its primary function is to provide technical and strategic support to local districts and school sites to ensure they have the resources they need to authentically engage and empower parents to support their children's academic success. The work of the PCSB is led by the following guidelines as outlined in the Parents as Equal Partners in the Education of their Children Resolution, adopted by the Board of Education in December 2010:
• • •
Parents are the first and lifelong teachers of their children Parents are knowledgeable and critical advocates for their children Parents are equitable partners in education requiring access to all pertinent information about their child’s school environment, instructors, and educational options and school site personnel Parents are inseparable from the academic success of their children Parents are equally accountable for educational outcomes
Facilities Services Division
The following branches of FSD are responsible in the execution of Parent Center upgrades: Asset Management Responsible for facilities activities related to long range master planning, space planning, and project definition for District facilities. Also, responsible for the Joint Use Development Program, Innovation Fund Projects, and Charter Bond Fund Programs. Maintenance & Operations (M&O) Responsible for the maintenance, repair and improvement of District facilities and equipment. This includes 1,092 K-12 schools and 241 early education centers, state preschools, adult schools and occupational/skill centers.
The Federal law, No Child Left Behind Title I Part A Subpart 1 section 1118, section (e), states the following regarding parental involvement and parent resource centers: BUILDING CAPACITY FOR INVOLVEMENT- To ensure effective involvement of parents and to support a partnership among the school involved, parents, and the community to improve student academic achievement, each school and local educational agency assisted under this part: (1) shall provide assistance to parents of children served by the school or local educational agency, as appropriate, in understanding such topics as the State's academic content standards and State student academic achievement standards, State and local academic
assessments, the requirements of this part, and how to monitor a child's progress and work with educators to improve the achievement of their children; (2) shall provide materials and training to help parents to work with their children to improve their children's achievement, such as literacy training and using technology, as appropriate, to foster parental involvement; (3) shall educate teachers, pupil services personnel, principals, and other staff, with the assistance of parents, in the value and utility of contributions of parents, and in how to reach out to, communicate with, and work with parents as equal partners, implement and coordinate parent programs, and build ties between parents and the school; (4) shall, to the extent feasible and appropriate, coordinate and integrate parent involvement programs and activities with Head Start, Reading First, Early Reading First, Even Start, the Home Instruction Programs for Preschool Youngsters, the Parents as Teachers Program, and public preschool and other programs, and conduct other activities, such as parent resource centers, that encourage and support parents in more fully participating in the education of their children; (emphasis added) (5) shall ensure that information related to school and parent programs, meetings, and other activities is sent to the parents of participating children in a format and, to the extent practicable, in a language the parents can understand; (6) may involve parents in the development of training for teachers, principals, and other educators to improve the effectiveness of such training; (7) may provide necessary literacy training from funds received under this part if the local educational agency has exhausted all other reasonably available sources of funding for such training; (8) may pay reasonable and necessary expenses associated with local parental involvement activities, including transportation and child care costs, to enable parents to participate in school-related meetings and training sessions; (9) may train parents to enhance the involvement of other parents; (10) may arrange school meetings at a variety of times, or conduct in-home conferences between teachers or other educators, who work directly with participating children, with parents who are unable to attend such conferences at school, in order to maximize parental involvement and participation; (11) may adopt and implement model approaches to improving parental involvement; (12) may establish a districtwide parent advisory council to provide advice on all matters related to parental involvement in programs supported under this section;
(13) may develop appropriate roles for community-based organizations and businesses in parent involvement activities; and (14) shall provide such other reasonable support for parental involvement activities under this section as parents may request.
The information noted has been gathered from various unified school districts and school websites, as well as personnel interviews and questionnaires. We reviewed 8 school districts; 5 in California and 3 out of state. The school districts reviewed are listed in Table 1:
District San Diego Unified School District Long Beach Unified School District Fresno Unified School District Santa Ana Unified School District San Francisco Unified Chicago Public Schools, Illinois Buffalo Public Schools, New York Brookland School District, Arkansas Los Angeles Unified School District
Student Population 131,784
Number of Schools 228
55,571 404,151 34,526
125 675 58
We found that services provided at Parent Centers in various school districts vary and are similar to what LAUSD offers. Some typical services include the following: • • • • Community resource information School Information Parent Workshops Computer Access for Parents
Coordination of Parent Volunteers Coffee with the school’s Principal
Characteristics of Parent Centers
After researching and conducting interviews at other school districts, we noted the following: 5 out of 8 school districts have a centralized Parent Center, in addition to the school site’s individual Parent Centers. 3 out of 8 school districts have established a Parent University (further information on the Parent University is discussed in on page 17). Most school districts surveyed do not have an actual count of Parent Centers located at school sites. Per the school districts interviewed, one of the biggest challenges to operate and maintain a Parent Center is funding. The following challenges were noted in our survey: o Adequate funding to hire staff for each Parent Center (e.g. a parent coordinator or liaison); o Provision of childcare to parents attending workshops or classes; o Providing services to parents who speak multiple languages and lack of translators. The typical hours of operation for the Central Parent Center(s) are from Monday through Friday, 7:30 am to 5:00 pm. Hours for Parent Centers located at school sites are limited to school hours and some are only available by appointment only. Parent Centers are open in the evenings if events are scheduled after normal hours. Parent Centers have partnerships with the local community to offer services to parents, such as providing basic and advance computer classes, science programs, etc.
Table 2 below illustrates an overview of the California school districts and out-of-state school districts researched related to Parent Centers.
District Central Parent Center Parent Centers located at school sites YES Number of Parent Centers located at the school sites 108 Table 2 # of Schools Parent University Student Population Student Racial Breakdown
San Diego Unified School District
Long Beach Unified School District Fresno Unified School District
Santa Ana Unified School District
San Francisco Unified School District
Latino 45.7% White 23.9% African-American 11.8% Filipino 6% Indo-Chinese 5.1% Asian 3.3% Native American.4% Pacific Islander.8% Multiracial 3.1% Latino 52% African American 17% Asian 14% White 16% Multiracial 1% Latino 60.6% White 13.5% African-American 10.7% Filipino .4% Asian 13.7% Native American .7% Pacific Islander .4% Latino 94.6% White 1.8% African-American .6% Asian /Pacific Islander/ Filipino 3.3% Native American .7% Other .4% Latino 24% White 12% Chinese 33% Japanese 1% Korean 1% African-American 10% Filipino 6% Pacific Islander 1% Other Non-White 10% Declined to state 4%
The Long Beach school district had five Parent Centers, however due to budget cuts, four were closed down and the last remaining Parent Center was closed at the end of FY 2011-2012. 28 The number of parent centers is based on the research performed however we could not verify with school personnel 29 ibid 30 ibid
Central Parent Center
Chicago Public Schools, Illinois Buffalo Public Schools, New York
Parent Centers located at school sites YES
Number of Parent Centers located at the school sites Various
# of Schools
Student Racial Breakdown
Brookland School District, Arkansas
Latino 44.1% White 8.8% African-American 41.6% Asian /Pacific Islander 3.4% Native American .4% Latino 15.1% White 23% African-American 56.9% Asian /Pacific Islander 3.5% Native American 1.4% Latino 2.2% White 94.5% African-American 1.2% Asian /Pacific Islander .7% Native American/Native of Alaska .5% Latino 73.4% White 8.8% African-American 10.0% Asian 3.9% Pacific Islander .04% Filipino 2.2% Native American .04%
Chicago Public Schools has two Parent Centers that are centrally located and are planning to open two more. One of the two Parent Centers they operate is a Bilingual Parent Resource Center (BPRC). Any parent that has an English Language learner student can access the services provide at the BPRC. The BPRC acts as a one-stop-shop for parents, community leaders and funding partners35. • The BPRC services 280 schools that are classified as bilingual. • The BPRC has five classrooms and 1 computer lab for a total of 6 classrooms. • One lending library is available for parents. • The center is located at an elementary school. • Approximately 60 parents attend classes every day. • About 25-30 parents attend workshops.
Chicago has two central locations, one which is a Bilingual Resource Parent Center. The school district is planning to open two more Parent Centers. 32 The school district does not know the exact number of Parent Centers at school sites. 33 Could not be verified with school personnel 34 Does not have an actual count of all Parent Centers throughout the District; however based on the FY 2011-2012 Title 1 schools, it is estimated there would be a total of 576 Parent Centers. 35 http://www.cps.edu/Spotlight/Pages/Spotlight33.aspx
The center has partnerships with the Chicago National Museum of Mexican Art, the National Center for Family Literacy, the Alder Planetarium, Frida Kahlo Community organization, Mexican Consulate and Tecnològico de Monterrey of Mexico. The Tecnològico de Monterrey of Mexico provides materials and instructors for the computer classes. In collaboration with the Tecnològico de Monterrey, parents learn basic and advanced computer skills and web page design. More than 500 parents have graduated from the Tecnològico de Monterrey program. In collaboration with the Chicago Alder Planetarium, 60 parents participated in a Science Program, which was composed of workshops focusing on topics such as global warming, the earth’s atmosphere and recycling.
One significant difference between LAUSD and the following three school districts is that they have established a Parent University. What is a Parent University? A Parent University is a strategy used by urban school districts around the country to empower, engage, and connect families to District and community services and programs. At the core of this family and community engagement strategy is a focus on Parent Learning for the purpose of supporting student achievement. A Parent University aims to strengthen and sustain meaningful family engagement at all levels of the school system36. The following three school districts have established a Parent University and are detailed in the pages ahead: • • • San Diego Unified School District Fresno Unified School District Buffalo Public Schools
San Diego Unified School District The purpose of the San Diego Parent University is to train the families and guardians of students to become academic coaches. Classes are held throughout the school year at a central Parent Center location and at selected schools. The Parent University provides free child care for children up to age 6 for all families participating in the Parent University classes. The Parent University provides free transportation to selected schools. The hours of operation for the central locations are from 7:00 am-4:00 pm. Certificated teachers teach the classes. The courses are offered for free to parents and guardians.
The following is an abridged list of the classes that are offered at San Diego Unified School District37:
Internet Safety: Keeping Your Child Safe: Learn ways to protect children from danger online. (For parents of students Grades K-12.)
Academic Support Classes
Jump into Kinder: Three-session class focusing on developing good homework habits early. Parents receive a Homework Tool Kit to guide these important skills at home. (For parents of prekindergarteners)
Parents Growing Together: Sixsession class helps parents learn important skills to guide their children, such as communication, consistency in parenting and effective discipline techniques. (For parents of students Pre-K-Grade 6)
Reading Through the Genres: Reading is the building block to learning, and for parents we give them the tools to help build a strong foundation. Parents receive a handy Home Reading Log to guide progress at home. (For Parents of student Grades K-5)
Get Your Child Organized for Homework: Three-session class helps parents learn how to maximize time for completing homework. Helps them deal with kids who don't want to do homework, and how to work with teachers to solve homework concerns. Participants get handy a Homework Tool Kit to help apply new skills at home. (For parents of student Grades 1-6 )
Active Parenting: The six-session class teaches parents and families how to better communicate with their children, solve behavior problems and resolve family conflict. (For Parents of students Grades K-12)
Math: What Are You Teaching My Child? Sharpens your ability to help your children with their math homework -- no matter how advanced. (For Parents of students Grades K-5)
Help Your Child Improve in Reading: Three-session class helps parents learn ways to develop a love of books in their children, and boost reading levels. (For parents of students grades K-2 and/or 3-5)
Can We Talk? Five-session class that helps parents improve communication with their children. Instructors guide parents on how to have a conversation about feelings with their child, how to build their self-esteem, discuss human sexuality, peer pressure and media mixed messages. (For parents of students Grades K-12)
How Do I Help My Child Get to College? It's never too early to start preparing for college. Learn how. (For Parents of students grades 612)
Reading to Learn: Three-session class provides activities to teach families ways to help their children develop a love of books and increase reading levels. (For parents of students Grades 3-5)
Second Step: Learn how to help children manage anger and identify feelings that help them better care for others. Six-session class teaches the three important steps to solving problems. When children learn these problem-solving steps at a young age, they learn how to manage anger for life. (Parents Grades K-5)
Fresno Unified School District38 At Fresno Unified School District, the goal of the Parent University is to focus on Parent Learning for the purpose of increasing parent involvement in schools. The Parent University will:
• • •
Empower families to be vital partners in educating their child(ren); Engage and equip families with the tools and “know-how” to access services and understand how the school district operates; Connect families to resources within Fresno Unified and the Community.
Courses Offered Through Parent University Parent University courses are based upon four strands of parent learning opportunities: • • • • Parent Education Fresno Unified School District 101 Career Ready Graduates Personal Growth and Development.
Each of the following strands is founded upon the Fresno Unified School District’s Goals and Core Beliefs. Strand 1- Parent Education: provides workshops and training to cover child development as a child enters preschool through 12th grade and beyond. Topics such as creating a home environment conducive to learning, discipline, and communication strategies to help families become their child’s first and foremost teacher will be included. Strand 2- Fresno Unified School District (FUSD) 101: designed to connect families with the respective school sites, FUSD programs, and services. The development of the Baseline Parent Modules will help students and families know what is available and know how to access programs and services. Strand 3- Career Ready Graduate: provides the knowledge and resources for families to monitor, guide, plan, and make informed decisions about their child’s education. Families will learn about K-12 opportunities and what it takes to transition successfully from elementary to secondary and become a career ready graduate.
Strand 4-Personal Growth/Development: includes civic engagement and leadership training to build capacity of parents for English Learner Advisory Committees (ELAC), District English Learners Advisory Committee (DELAC), School Site Council (SSC), Community Advisory Committee (CAC), Task Forces, etc. It will include parent learning opportunities in English as a Second Language (ESL), Adult Basic Education (ABE), General Educational Development
(GED), and certificate/job training programs available at Fresno Adult School as well as services and programs in the community.
Parent University courses are free to all Fresno Unified School District families and caregivers. Courses are held at various school sites and available in English, Spanish, and Hmong. Child care is available upon request. More than 5,700 parents participated in parent education courses.
The following table describes some of the classes that are offered at Fresno Unified School District:
Strand 1: Parent Education
The Parent University Baseline Module Parent Learning Program consists of 8 sessions to train and inform families about Fresno Unified School District strategies and procedures. The Module provides an overview of the District, student learning environment, and district resources available for families to support student achievement.
Strand 2: FUSD 101
ATLAS Parent Portal Training: ATLAS is the new Fresno Unified student information system. The Parent Portal is the website which provides real-time student data including schedules, attendance, and grades. Training will provide a unique Parent ID and password for each child that is enrolled in FUSD.
Strand 3: Career Ready Graduates
The College Road Map Helps students search for their field of study, different types of universities throughout California, and the United States: Ivy, Private, Public, Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCUs), Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSLs) and other colleges and universities. Audience: Parents and high school students.
Strand 4: Personal Growth/Development
ASTHMA 101 In the class parents will learn about the Asthma Action Plan and the importance of communicating with the school nurse and the health care provider to maintain optimal health for their child. Parents will learn about asthma medications and the correct way to take them. We will also cover how to recognize and avoid substances that may trigger an asthma episode and what to do in an emergency. The class is taught in partnership with FUSD’s Health Services and the American Lung Association in California Nutrition Program: 5 Ways to $ave The average American spends about 15% of their income on food every year. When money’s tight, it’s tempting to sacrifice quality to save a few bucks. But your family CAN eat healthy, delicious foods on a limited budget! In this interactive workshop, you will learn moneysaving and time-saving tips, taste healthy recipes, and learn skills to shop for groceries that can make your food last longer and save you money. Nutrition Program: Re-Think Your Drink Do you know how much sugar is in your soda, sports drink or fruit punch? Did you know that many of the sugar sweetened beverages we drink are also high in calories and low in nutrients? In this interactive workshop, you will learn how many “empty calories” are in sugar sweetened beverages, how to choose lowcalorie alternatives, and taste a healthy beverage
Session 1: Guiding Documents Provides an overview of the District policies that guide student learning. Topics: Core Beliefs, District Goals, and Parent/Student/Teacher Compact
Session 2: The Learning Environment Provides an overview of the learning environment and grade level standards. Topics: instructional practices, standards, and academic support systems for all students
Surviving Your First Year of College: You Can Do It! Provides students and parents with the tools to survive in their first year of college. You will learn about making the grades, life in residence halls, following rules, regulations, getting involved, making new friends, clubs, organizations, and other new experiences at your new home away from home in an academic and college environment. Audience: Parents and high school students. Financial Literacy 3: Searching for Scholarships This course will help students and parents learn how to search for various types of scholarships; athletic, band, merit, field of study, science, minority, and other types. Students and parents will understand how scholarships are awarded, how to meet deadlines, meet criteria, and what an essay should include for scholarship opportunities. Audience: Parents of high school students.
Buffalo Public Schools
The Howard Lewis Parent University (HLPU) provides family-centered educational and social programs for parents and their children. Student success in school is highly correlated to parents’ participation in their children’s education. HLPU offers traditional and non-traditional programs which encourage active family participation. They work to motivate and strengthen individual confidence and self-determination in both parents and children. They trust that the nurturing and supportive environment they offer will spur personal growth, increase children’s academic achievement, and lead to lifelong learning for all participants. Classes take place in select schools, community and faith based locations throughout the city. The courses are offered for free to parents/guardians of students. The following are some of the programs/courses offered at HLPU:
Project Spider Early Childhood Program – Designed to meet the needs of pre-school children before they enter a full day pre-kindergarten program. In this program students receive instruction in early reading, math, writing and gross motor development. Cooperative education allows the parent to become a partner in their child’s education while improving their academic skills. ESL (English as a Second Language) – In addition to learning the English language, this class provides training and help for parents in relation to such basic needs such as reading school notices, understanding report cards and school forms, developing job skills and furthering their education. The Parent Center offers morning and evening ESL classes. Child care is available. GED - The Parent Center offers classes to prepare students to take their General Education Diploma exam. Morning classes are held Monday through Thursday from 9:15 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. and evening classes are held Tuesdays and Thursdays from 4:15 - 7:15 p.m. Child care is available. Parenting Skills – These workshops focus on role playing and modeling appropriate parenting skills. Academic Tutoring – This service provides reading and mathematics tutorial instruction for students on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. Parents assist with hands-on instruction in order to better understand their child’s curriculum and to be able to use instructional units at home. Adult Computer Instruction – The Parent Center is offering 3-day workshops in computer instruction. Course offerings include Resume Writing, Introduction to the Computer, Creating a Mailing List, Spreadsheets, Print Shop Fun and more. Informational Seminars – Parents participate in programs which outline and update information on the school system, resources in the community, health care, parenting and much more. Take Home Computer - Looking for math and reading help for your child? The Parent Center will lend an I Book computer to Buffalo Public School students to use for six weeks. Age appropriate educational and fun software will accompany the computer. Field Trips – Parents and children are exposed to local cultural and other educational / recreational activities through on-site visits to the Buffalo Zoo, Buffalo Museum of Science, Shea's Theatre, and more.
LAUSD Annual Schoolwide Survey to Parents
Parents as Equal Partners in the Education of Their Children Resolution Taskforce Report presented recommendations agreed upon by the Taskforce. The Taskforce consist of the following four working groups: (i) the District Parents’ Bill of Rights and Responsibilities, (ii) The Parent and Family Center Resource Curriculum; (iii) the Parent and Family Center Accountability Matrix; and (iv) the District Family Support Network and Delivery Model. Each working group listed various recommendations on different issues. As a result, the Parent and Family Center Accountability Working Group created an Accountability Monitoring Framework which contains a comprehensive list of six quality measures:40 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. Welcoming environment at all schools and Parent and Family Centers Parent Center Accessibility and Safe Environment Parent Center Responsiveness Parent Center Collaboration with all stakeholders Parent Center Trainings Parent Center Value and significance
The Framework is to be reviewed often to ensure its ongoing responsiveness and relevance to parents/families and student outcomes.41 The recommendations will be implemented within a three year period. PCSB will be developing a committee in the Fall of 2012 that will begin planning for the implementation of all the components found in the Taskforce report. Some of the tools that will be used for data collection and quality assessments on Parent Centers are the following:42 • • • • • School Experience Survey End of the Year Parent Center Report Ranking or grading of Parent Centers Parent Feedback form (given at the beginning of the year and x number of times during the year to determine what has changed) Family Engagement Quality Rubric, etc.
LAUSD conducts an annual School Experience Survey to provide parents with a forum to give input in the school learning environment. Within the Survey there is one question with three subquestions pertaining to Parent Centers. The following is an excerpt from the School Experience Survey for FY 10-1143 relating to Parent Centers:
LAUSD Parents as Equal Partners in the Education on their Children, Final Report, March 10, 2011, Appendix E LAUSD Parents as Equal Partners in the Education on their Children, Final Report, March 10, 2011, pg 15 42 LAUSD Parents as Equal Partners in the Education on their Children, Final Report, March 10, 2011, Appendix E 43 As of August 2, 2012, the result for the 2011-2012 School Experience Survey has not been published.
Suggestion for the schoolwide survey, an important question is to ask parents in the survey: How can a Parent Center be more effective?44 • • Develop a survey to assess how the center is currently operating. The survey should include space for parents to indicate what is going well, what needs to be changed, and what can be added.
After the implementation of the Accountability Monitoring Framework it may help assess the operating environment at the Parent Centers. Survey examples from the state of Arkansas and Fresno Unified School District can be found in Appendix A.
School Parent Center A Tool to Open School Doors for Increased Parental Involvement, Ida Collier, B.A & Suzann Hernandez B.A., Center for Effective Parenting, Arkansas, 2004, Pg 3
PART I: LAUSD PARENT CENTERS ENHANCEMENTS IN BOARD DISTRICT 5: USING BOARD MEMBER PRIORITY FUNDS
Background On April 26, 2011, the Board of Education amended the Facilities Services Division Strategic Execution Plan to add Parent and Family Center upgrades and improvements at 5 schools. The five schools fell under the former Local Districts 4, 5 and 6 and Board Member district 5. The projects were funded by Board Member Priority funds. The Board Member’s intent was that the five Parent and Family Center projects proposed in the Board Report will serve as the school site central access point facility model for the entire District and support the implementation of a Family Support Network.45 The Parent and family center upgrades include minor renovations, upgrades and equipping the facility with furniture, fixtures and equipment including technology, children’s corner and signage. These centers established a new standard for Parent & Family Centers. On May 24, 2011, the Board of Education amended the FSD SEP to add 47 Alteration and Improvements projects. Of those 47 projects, 29 are improvements to existing Parent Centers. The 29 schools fell under former Local Districts 5 and 6 and Board Member district 5. The projects were funded by Board Member Priority funds. The Parent and Family center upgrades include minor renovations, upgrades and equipping the facility with furniture, fixtures and equipment including technology, children’s corner and signage. It is important to note that the 34 Parent and Family Centers described above are not monitored by PCSB but rather by the Local Districts that they fall under. Starting July 1, 2012, five administrators will be reporting to PCSB and those five individuals will be visiting schools to determine how many Parent Centers the District currently has. In lieu of physically visiting schools, San Diego Unified School District took a different approach and sent out Surveys to schools to determine how many schools have parent centers (an example can be found in Appendix B) Risks to Consider for Future Parent Centers The upgrades made to the five Parent Centers for the above mentioned schools were part of the April 26, 2011 FSD SEP amendment to improve and upgrade the Parent Centers. We visited five Parent Centers at the following schools in Board Member District 5: • • • • • Vernon City Elementary Luther Burbank Middle School Henry Gage Middle School Huntington Park High School James A. Garfield High School
After visiting the Parent Centers we noted the following risks:
Los Angeles Unified School District, Board of Education Report 288-10/11, Facilities Services Division; PGS 1, 3
Two schools out of the five schools visited were not using the Parent Centers or equipment for the intended purpose. • Vernon Elementary School was equipped with 25 laptops and they were only being used for training. All other times the laptops were kept locked inside a mobile laptop cart. The Bilingual Coordinator explained that the technology infrastructure at the school is very poor and trying to connect 25 laptops onto the internet was impossible. However, Vernon has applied to have the technology infrastructure fixed at their school and they are hoping that it will be completed by the end of the year. Huntington Park High School encountered problems with community and parent groups in that the groups did not understand the District’s goal of increasing parent and family engagement through Parent Centers, since the adoption of Parent as Equal Partners in the Education of Their Children Resolution. Specifically, the senior community groups at the school were not effectively using the Parent Center. Prior to the transformation of Parent Centers, the groups used the Parent Center as a gathering place where they would hold parties such as baby showers or have bake sales which did not support the students or the school. It was difficult for the Principal to have the groups understand the new strategy of the District regarding Parent Centers so the Principal decided to close the Parent Center for the school year and only open the Parent Center when workshops and classes were held. Various hours of operation. Varying degrees of volunteerism ranging from 1-35 parents volunteering per day. Staffing varies at each Parent Center.
We also noted the following observations: • • •
Please see details for all five schools visited in Table 3.
Table 3 illustrates some characteristics of the Parent Centers visited.
Vernon City Elementary
Luther Burbank Middle School
Hours of operation
Henry T. Gage Middle School MondayFriday 7:30am4pm 9
Huntington Park High School It only opened when workshops were held Not Available
James A. Garfield High School Monday-Friday 7am-3:00pm
Number of registered parent volunteers Number of parents volunteering per day Number of parents attending Classes
7-20 (1) Community Representative
25-30 (2) Community Representatives (1) Title 3 Instructional Coach (oversees the Parent Center)
Approx. 30 (1) Parent Resource Liaison
Not Available Principal oversaw the Parent Center
15-40 (2) Community Representatives (1) Parent Resource Liaison
Stakeholder Views While at the schools we interviewed the Community Representatives, the Parent Resource Liaisons, a Bilingual Coordinator, Principals, an Instructional Coach and Parents. They expressed the following challenges about Parent Centers: Recruiting and engaging parents at Middle Schools and High Schools is difficult to do. o “Parent’s feel that their kids are too big and there is no need to participate.” Funding (i) to provide child care for parents that attend workshops and (ii) for hiring a full day Community Representative. (Community Representatives are paid for 3 hours and volunteer the other 5+ hours.) Issues with conflicting classes or workshops at the feeder schools. Changing the culture of Parent Centers e.g. Huntington Park HS. Technology infrastructure at the schools may not support the IT equipment being provided (i.e. laptops, tablets, routers, etc.). Two parent volunteers expressed that they enjoy volunteering at the Parent Centers. However, one parent mentioned that she has volunteered in the past at another Parent Center and had a bad
experience where she did not feel appreciated. Both parents also expressed that they understand the benefits of participating. In addition to helping their children, they also benefit from obtaining the volunteer certificate which can be used for immigration purposes. Status of Parent and Family Centers Upgrades & Improvements Board Member Priority Funds Completed Projects46
Former Local School Districts Gage MS 6 Vernon City EL 6 Garfield HS 5 Huntington Park HS 6 Burbank MS 4 Eastman ES 5 Brooklyn ES 5 Harrison ES 5 Lane ES 5 Belvedere MS 5 Belvedere ES 5 Rowan ES 5 Pacific Blvd ES 6 Corona ES 6 Woodlawn ES 6 Bell HS 6 Heliotrope ES 6 Humphreys ES 5 Marianna EL 5 Hope ES 6 Walnut Park ES 6
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21
BM District 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5
Level MS ES HS HS MS ES ES ES ES MS ES ES ES ES ES HS ES ES ES ES ES
Final costs were not available as of 6/11/12
Board Member Priority Fund Projects in Progress47
School Montara Ave ES San Miguel Independence ES San Gabriel ES Bryson ES Southeast MS Stanford ES LD 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 6 BM District 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 Level ES ES ES ES ES MS ES Primary Center ES Budget $ 83,539 $ 72,116 $ $ $ $ $ $ $ 44,319 47,799 40,156 66,189 76,169 84,470 76,034 % Completed 40% 40% 40% 25% 20% 15% 15% 5% 5%
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 Middleton PC 9 State ES
Board Member Priority Fund Projects Not Started48
School Hughes(Teresa) ES Loma Vista ES Huntington Park ES Park Ave ES LD 6 6 6 6 BM District 5 5 5 5 Level ES ES ES ES $ $ $ $ Budget 83,778 67,195 32,249 82,296 % Completed 0% 0% 0% 0%
1 2 3 4
As of June 11, 2012 ibid
PART II: LAUSD PARENT CENTERS ENHANCEMENTS DISTRICTWIDE: BOND FUNDS FROM FACILITIES SERVICES DIVISION STRATEGIC EXECUTION PLAN
Background On June 14, 2011, the Board of Education amended the FSD SEP to allocate $20 million in bond funds for the development of parent and family center upgrade and improvement projects. This action was taken to support the District’s commitment to increasing parent, family and community engagement and implementation of the Board-adopted Parents as Equal Partners in the Education of Their Children Resolution.49 Investing bond funds into upgrade and improvement projects that provide schools with an enhanced parent and family center will provide the welcoming environment for which engagement can occur and student achievement can be supported.50 On February 14, 2012 the Board of Education amended the FSD SEP to define and approve 22 parent and family center upgrade and improvement projects; all funding comes from the $20 million allocation.51 On April 10, 2012 the Board of Education amended the FSD SEP to define and approve 1 parent and family center upgrade and improvement project at Miramonte Elementary; all funding comes from the $20 million allocation. Projects will be developed to upgrade and improve existing parent and family centers and to repurpose available facilities capacity to create a parent and family center. Staff may also pursue the possibility of creating additional facility capacity to enable a new parent and family center to be established, as well as improvement to existing centers to create an outside entrance/exit. Project scopes and budgets will vary based on general parent and family center standards and the conditions at each school Project scopes are developed based on PCSB parent and family center facilities standards, and may include minor renovations, upgrades and equipping the facility with furniture, fixtures and equipment such as technology and signage. Program and Scope of Parent and Family Centers after June 201152 The program, based on a model project implemented in Board District 5 during the spring of 2011, established a new standard for Parent & Family Centers that welcomes parents, honors their participation and contributions to the school community, and connects families to the resources necessary to support their children’s education.
Los Angeles Unified School District, Board of Education Report 142-11/12, Facilities Services Division and Parent Community Services Branch; PG 1 50 Los Angeles Unified School District, Board of Education Report 341-10/11, Facilities Services Division and Parent Community Services Branch; PG 3 51 Los Angeles Unified School District, Board of Education Report 142-11/12, Facilities Services Division and Parent Community Services Branch; PG 1 52 LAUSD Parent and Family Center Improvement Program School Site Partnership Overview
The program will make key facility improvements and equipment investments to enhance a school site’s ability to develop and deliver parent trainings and programming that enhances and deepens parent capacity to support student learning at home and quality instruction at school. Typical investments and upgrades will include: Technology package—Laptops and/or desktops to support web-based trainings and promote online resources such as the Parent Access System, ISIS, the FAMILIES website, web-based LAUSD communications (LAUSD Magazine, Superintendent’s Newsletter), etc. The goal is to provide 24 laptops per Parent Center. Parent & Family Center Signage—a package of exterior and interior signage indicating a strong presence of the Parent & Family Center on the campus and encourage parent participation. Multi-purpose training furniture—collapsible table, chairs, storage, bookshelves to meet diverse parent trainings and meeting needs Children’s corner—as space permits, to support participation of families with non-school age children Training package—LCD projector, screens, document readers, white boards, etc. Maintenance & Operations improvements—floor repair, paint, electrical, etc. as needed The Parent & Family Center Improvement project is intended to equip schools with a space conducive to robust parent engagement activities that will lead to strengthened student achievement. As such, the Board of Education and the Superintendents of Schools has required that all Parent & Family Center investments demonstrate programming that directly supports the District’s key strategies and benchmarks that will lead to 100% graduation and proficiency for all. Every school under consideration for a Family & Parent Center improvement project, therefore, will partake in a facility & programmatic site visit that will include: 1. An evaluation of the school’s current Parent & Family Center in order to assess its physical needs and ensure an appropriate scope of work and; 2. An assessment of the current level of parent engagement activities, outcomes and benchmarks in place for the development of a partnership agreement that demonstrates the school’s use of its new Parent & Family Center as a means to deepen and enhance parent engagement to directly support quality instruction at home and at school.
Status of the 23 Parent and Family Centers Upgrades & Improvements53
Projects Not Started
School Ranchito ES Mulholland MS Basset ES Taft HS North Hollywood HS Oxnard ES Romer MS Olive Vista MS University HS Cienega ES Western ES LD 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 4 4 4 7 7 7 8 8 8 7 BM District 6 3 3 4 3 6 6 6 4 1 1 1 4 2 2 2 1 7 7 7 7 7 7 Level ES MS ES HS HS ES MS MS HS ES ES Primary Center ES HS ES HS ES MS HS ES ES MS ES Budget 109,476.00 98,091.00 82,393.00 120,688.00 117,496.00 94,572.00 35,680.00 77,966.00 151,984.00 94,572.00 102,057.00 71,661.00 110,683.00 82,395.00 84,118.00 78,196.00 76,873.00 183,201.00 82,310.00 89,984.00 123,646.00 135,454.00 143,535.00
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11
$ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $ $
12 Mariposa-Nabi PC 13 Grandview ES Cortines School of Visual and 14 Performing Arts 15 Aldama ES 16 Belmont HS 17 52nd St. ES 18 Edison MS 19 King-Drew medical Magnet HS 20 186th St. ES 21 Gulf ES 22 Wilmington MS 23 Miramonte El
As of June 11, 2012
Table 4 below illustrates an estimate of how many Parent Centers may be upgraded with the $20
a b Remaining Balance after the 23 centers are completed c Average cost per center d (a/d) e The number of parents centers to be upgraded at the average cost 196 $ 102,045 (b/23) $ 17,652,969 (a-b) Earmarked for Parent Center upgrades Total Budgeted Amounts to be spent for 23 Parent Centers $ $ 20,000,000 2,347,031
Status of All Planned and Completed Parent Centers Districtwide
The following tables and graphs include all Parent Centers that were funded with Board Member Priority funds and from the $20 million allocation. Table 5 below describes the overall progress made across Board Member Districts.
Board Member District Student Population per BM District55 Completed & upgraded Parent Centers56 In Progress57 Have not been started58 Total BMD 1* 75,740 BMD 2* 108,579 BMD 3* 94,397 BMD 4* 61,202 BMD 554 104,841 BMD 6* 97,330 BMD 7* 109,798 Total 651,887
0 0 4 4
0 0 3 3
0 0 3 3
0 0 3 3
21 9 4 34
0 0 4 4
0 0 6 6
21 9 27 57
*The funds used for these projects come from the $20 million allocation.
Board Member Priority funds were used for these projects FY 2011-2012 and the number include charter schools 56 As of 6/11/12 57 ibid 58 ibid
Chart 1 depicts the number of Parent Centers per Board Member District
35 30 25 20 15 10 5 0 BMD 1 BMD 2 BMD 3 BMD 4 BMD 5 BMD 6 BMD 7
Chart 2 illustrates the number of Parent Centers per Educational Service Center
APPENDIX A Samples of Surveys for Parent Centers Fresno Unified School District
_______________________needs your help in planning programs and services that will serve you and your children. Please take five minutes to fill out this survey and return it to Room_____. Your input will enable us to develop activities that will serve our school and community. Thanks! 1. What parenting issues or topics interest you? Mark all those that apply. Building Self esteem Teaching responsibility Health and Immunizations Teaching your child decision making Teen sexual abuse Smoking Prevention Parent Leadership training Drug prevention Alcohol Prevention Vocational Education/Careers Help with Reading and Literacy College Preparation Gangs/Peer Pressure College Financial Aid Dropouts: Keeping kids in school Helping with Homework Fire safety Cultural/Fine Arts for children How to work in school teams Prejudice and discrimination Parent/child communication Positive Discipline AIDS English as a Second language Understanding/Helping with Math Fitness and Diet classes for parents
Understanding Test Scores Sexually transmitted diseases
Other___________________________________________________________________________________________ ________________________________________________________________________________________________ 2. These are the best days for me to attend meetings, events or social gatherings at the school: Monday Wednesday Friday Tuesday Thursday Saturday ___a.m. or ___p.m. 3. These are the best time for me to attend meetings, events or social gatherings at the school: Morning before work Daytime in general Lunch hour Late afternoon Evening Saturday ___a.m. or ___p.m. Other___________________________________________________________________________________________ 4. What would prevent you from attending meetings, events or social gatherings sponsored by the school? Not interested—if so, why not?______________________________________________________________________ Don’t have time Need childcare Need transportation Meetings/activities are too long/too short. If so, what length of time for a meeting/activity do you prefer? 1/2 hour 1 hour 1-1/2 hour 2 hours Meetings/activities are boring. If so, why? Too long Speakers are not good
Topics not of interest to me
Presentations are dry
Not interested in business Meetings (SGT, SSC or PTA)
5. We need parent leaders on school and district committees. Please mark the committee you would be in joining as a team member. School Governance Team School Site Council (SSC)
Parent Involvement Committee English Learners Advisory Comm.
School Representative at district committees
A guide to community resources covering everything from social service agencies to museums
6. As a parent, what might our school do to help you? Have a Parent resource center Uniform exchange program
Newsletter or other regular Information on topics of concern to parents Parent Support group meetings on topics of concern
For additional information I can be contacted at: Name_____________________________________________ Phone_______________________________________________________
State of Arkansas
APPENDIX B Example of a Survey to determine the number of Parent Centers San Diego Unified School District
School: Parent Engagement Contact: Area: Email
Blueprint to Accelerate Achievement Taskforce in Partnership with the Association of African American Educators Area 4: Parent and Community Support • Parent Center Survey
Blueprint Action 1: All schools must have a Parent Center*.
Please check the level that most closely identifies the parent center in place at your site.
There is no parent center at the school.
• • • • • Academic or parenting information is available to all families or distributed by the school or counseling center. Some information may be available to support African American (AA) and/or African (A) children. There are traditional types of parent opportunities for families such as Back-to-School night, parent-teacher conferences, good citizen assemblies, open house, etc. Some parents volunteer to prepare materials for the school as needed. Other:
There is a space or a room that serves as a parent center.
• • • • • Academic or parenting information is available including information to support AA and/or A children. There are periodic learning opportunities for parents of AA and/or A children. The center is used by parent volunteers to put together materials for the school or classrooms yet there is no established volunteer program in place. A computer and printer with internet access is available for parents. Other:
There is a parent center coordinated by a staff member, volunteers and/or partners that offers periodic programs and activities to support student academic success and development.
In addition to the activities listed in Level 1, other descriptors may include:
• • • • The school has a yearly calendar of events and/or training opportunities for AA and A parents and families, and other diverse groups. Parent/family and community meetings and trainings are held at the parent center. The center provides regular and frequent family programs and other opportunities to support student learning Childcare and interpretation are provided to overcome common barriers to parent
engagement. Materials and information is culturally relevant for all families and representative of the community.
There is a Parent/Family Center staffed by a trained family-friendly volunteer and/or paid staff member that facilitates systematic parent engagement with staff and families to achieve improved learning outcomes for students. In addition to the activities listed in Level 1 and 2, other descriptors may include:
• • •
The school has a parent engagement plan based on student data and parent needs and is aligned to the goals in the SPSA. A variety of curriculum-related and parenting materials are available in a variety of languages. Parents receive regular assistance on how to use computers to access student information (ParentConnect, Naviance), email teachers, and utilize website resources to support student learning. Positive messages are displayed in a variety of languages, attractive posters reflect and celebrate the cultural contributions of the school population which contribute to a welcoming atmosphere.
*A parent center, also known as a Family Center, Family Resource Center, etc., is a place where parents, staff and community come together to work in partnership with the belief that increased family engagement = increased student performance. A place where parents are treated as valid and valuable allies in supporting student achievement as evidenced by their continuous input at planning meetings and site decisions.
ANNEX A DISTRIBUTION LIST
Members, Board of Education Superintendent of Schools Sr. Deputy Superintendent, School Operations General Counsel
ANNEX B AUDIT TEAM
Katharine Monishi, Audit Manager Luceli Ceja, Principal Auditor
Know about fraud, waste or abuse?
Tell us about it.
Maybe you are a School District Employee, or maybe you are a private citizen. Either way, you are a taxpayer. Maybe you know something about fraud, or waste, or some other type of abuse in the School District. The Office of the Inspector General has a hotline for you to call. You can also write to us. If you wish, we will keep your identity confidential. You can remain anonymous, if you prefer. And you are protected by law from reprisal by your employer.
Call the Hotline: (213) 241-7778 Or 1-866-LAUSD-OIG Write to us: Fraud Hotline Center 333 S. Beaudry Ave., 12th Floor Los Angeles, CA 90017 Website: www.lausdoig.org