Interesting findings for parents with children in school

Nunzio's picture

Below is the link to a yahoo.com article summarizing a new study that compares scholastic achievement and other outcomes among private, public, and parochial education. It found that the type of school mattered less than the involvement of parents in their children's education. That's not much of a surprise, but I think the main lessons here are that parents can't expect schools to be their children's sole educator and that parental involvement can improve scholastic outcomes for children whose parents cannot afford to send them to private or parochial schools. Unfortunately, I think some parents spend oodles of money or their children's grade school and high school education, expecting them to come out as rocket scientists, yet never take the time to check homework, get involved in the home and school association, or even read the information sent home in communication folders.

http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20071010/ap_on_re_us/public_private_schools

It's a good reminder that parents need to be active participants in their children's education. Schools can't do it all and shouldn't be expected to do it all.

Kat's picture

Nunzio wrote:Unfortunately,

Nunzio wrote:

Unfortunately, I think some parents spend oodles of money or their children's grade school and high school education, expecting them to come out as rocket scientists, yet never take the time to check homework, get involved in the home and school association, or even read the information sent home in communication folders.

It's a good reminder that parents need to be active participants in their children's education. Schools can't do it all and shouldn't be expected to do it all.

__________________________
The 200 wealthiest people in the world have more money than the poorest 3 billion people.

Nor should the school be the ones having to teach the kids common courtesy, respect, common sense or how to be an all around good person. That is OUR jobs as parents, NOT the teachers - no matter how much the education costs.

Lisa33's picture

I am glad to read this

I am glad to read this study, because no matter what we would like to do, I doubt Tommy and I will be able to afford any lofty schooling for our as-yet-unconceived children.

Also I agree with you guys! Parents really do need to be involved. But what about parents who work all the time, or are single parents who have to work? That puts them at a disadvantage, no?

MichelleLynn's picture

I don't think it puts

I don't think it puts parents at a disadvantage, I just think they need to find more creative ways to be involved, With email now I can send my kids teachers emails at all hours and I get call backs, I send in notes, conferences and back to school nights works with scheduling for working parents. Involved does not just mean being on the PTA or volunteering in class, thank God there are parents who can do that, but I am sure not one and I think i would consider myself very involved in their school..

Nunzio's picture

Lisa33 wrote:Also I agree

Lisa33 wrote:

Also I agree with you guys! Parents really do need to be involved. But what about parents who work all the time, or are single parents who have to work? That puts them at a disadvantage, no?

It is hard, but I think you have to make it a priority in your family life, because taking school seriously and doing well in it gives your child a significant leg up when they become an adult. When they're 18, you're not going to get that opportunity again.

Simply checking homework can make a big difference, because it shows your child that you take their education seriously and so should they. And, it only takes a half hour or so. I usually check homework before dinner, so the kids have time to make corrections, but there have been times that I didn't check homework until after midnight, when the kids are already in bed. In those instances, I leave it out on the dining room table and the kids make the corrections in the morning, before they go to school.

Kat's picture

Nunzio wrote:Lisa33

Nunzio wrote:
Lisa33 wrote:

Also I agree with you guys! Parents really do need to be involved. But what about parents who work all the time, or are single parents who have to work? That puts them at a disadvantage, no?

It is hard, but I think you have to make it a priority in your family life, because taking school seriously and doing well in it gives your child a significant leg up when they become an adult. When they're 18, you're not going to get that opportunity again.

Simply checking homework can make a big difference, because it shows your child that you take their education seriously and so should they. And, it only takes a half hour or so. I usually check homework before dinner, so the kids have time to make corrections, but there have been times that I didn't check homework until after midnight, when the kids are already in bed. In those instances, I leave it out on the dining room table and the kids make the corrections in the morning, before they go to school.

It is hard having kids period. But totally worth it ;) It's harder when you both work all the time, have the guilt of not being with your kids as much as you want, yet still have all these responsibilities education-wise. Nunzio is very disciplined when it comes to the whole homework thing - me, not so much. I do however help them study - I like to make up creative ways for them to absorb the information...songs, rhymes, funny stories, etc. But not math. Keep me away from the math.

Lisa33's picture

MichelleLynn, I'm glad there

MichelleLynn, I'm glad there are so many ways for parents to be involved.

Kat and Nunzio, you make parenting sound fun! (And you make your kids sound lucky!)

nhb's picture

It's hard to make sure kids

It's hard to make sure kids get the proper education. MichelleLynn, Kat & Nunzio are right. My husband & I both work full time, and sometimes my husband works a second job. But we make sure they homework, studying & projects (which consist of some late nights) were always done & completed. I keep in touch with my children's teachers through calls & email. In order for a child to have a decent future they have to have a decent education, which means parents have to be involved.

lms2357's picture

I absolutely agree with what

I absolutely agree with what this study has found. I feel that children who have parents that get involved with their children's education do much better. I was lucky enough to send my five daughters to Catholic schools for most of their education(sorry I'm biased for saying lucky, but it was the better alternative). Our grade school "expected" parents to be involved. I learned a valuable lesson from our principle. I remember Sister Mary stating at a meeting to the parents that if we ever had a problem with her or a teacher to "keep the child out of the conversation". Too many parents blame the faculty for things. For example, "Jennie failed the test because she had a bad teacher". If the children hear this (even if you believe it to be true)...they'll agree with it and their responsibility for the failure is removed. I've had issues with teachers, but never let my kids blame it on them. I always reminded them that when they're out there working in the "real world", we'll have to work with people we're not crazy about. I still think another big factor in this is the school environment. The best teachers and the best parents can't do anything when a child has to worry about being safe. One of my daughters went to Kensington High School for a total of one week. She was molested by two students. The school has Philadelphia police on duty, but still couldn't protect her. Unfortunately, she dropped out of high school after the incident. We had no other alternatives for public high schools since you have to attend the school in your district.

MichelleLynn's picture

I do have to say as well

I do have to say as well that most Head Starts are now requiring some level of parent involvement, whetether it be as a volunteer in the class for a few hours a week, helping withfundraising, being on committees, helping with flea markets, donations for fundraisers or charity, The criteria is very flexible and they do work with parents but I think it is a great thing because it is teaching parents as well from a very early school starting point for their kids that involvement is a job and has a benefit.

I also do the homework on the table in the morning and Johnny hates seeing those papers on the table when he comes down the steps.. Luckily we do not have to do it very often, for him it is usually just erasing and re-writing really sloppy words..
Ben on the other hand is a 7 year old perfectionist and he never has to re-do his homeowrk :)

MichelleLynn's picture

lms2357 wrote:

lms2357 wrote:

Unfortunately, she dropped out of high school after the incident. We had no other alternatives for public high schools since you have to attend the school in your district.

This is not true, you can transfer your child to a school outside their district, it can be time consuming, and they may miss some school but I think in light of circumstances your school should be helping you more.
Here is a link below, the info is a little different but the transfer forms can be printed out form here.

http://www.phila.k12.pa.us/students/voluntarytransfers.html

You can also contact the The Office of Student Placement,
their number is 215-400-4290
And their website is, http://www.phila.k12.pa.us/offices/otae/studentplacement/studentplacementmain.html

Good Luck!

Michelle

There are also Charter High Schools that may have openings,

dan's picture

MichelleLynn wrote:lms2357

MichelleLynn wrote:
lms2357 wrote:

We had no other alternatives for public high schools since you have to attend the school in your district.

you can transfer your child to a school outside their district

It may not be true now, but it may have been true at the time.
Additionally, even if it wasn't true at the time, it sure wouldn't have been the first time incorrect information was given out.

BTW, I'm so sorry to hear about what happened in this young lady's high school experience. How horrendous!

It also reminds me that we need to fight for our local public schools - even those of us who choose (and are able) to send our kids to private schools.

MichelleLynn's picture

No, it was always true, at

No, it was always true, at least going back at least 20 years it was because I babysat for a family on Allen Street who had their children going to MccCall School on 6th street as an out of district transfer, and I have wathced more families do the same over the years before Charter Schools came about,

I don't think they love to do it, but it can be done and should be done more often, if parents threatened more to move their children out of district and take that money to another school, just like what happens when children go to Charter Schools, maybe the School Board would finally take notice..

lms2357's picture

We applied for a transfer

We applied for a transfer immediately. I went to the school district's main office in CC. I asked to have her transferred to Carroll (near Port Richmond Plaza), they told me it wouldn't happen. I asked for Northeast H.S....another no. They finally told me that she could go to an alternative school at 4th and Somerset (no way!!). I also know of a family that sent their child to McCall (a GREAT school), but you must live in the district and they used another address. McCall is an elementary school and with elementary schools, you must live in the boundaries unless your a bussed minority. Most charter schools have requirements (B or higher in certain subjects, etc.). This rule applies with some high schools. Therefore, if you have an "average" student, you have no choice. This application means nothing. I've never heard of any child in this area being voluntary transferred to one of the "better" high schools (Northeast, Bodine, Lincoln). Unfortunately, my daughter became pregnant after this so when I wanted to put her back into Catholic school the following year, we had no childcare. She's going for her GED, and I'm hoping that she'll eventually go further.

I don't mean to make this into a looooong postThe reason she ended up in Kensington H.S. is a whole other story, but I am an involved parent (school projects, trips, volunteering) and sometimes a child is just an "average" student. I always told her that alot of successful people were average students. I went back to college in my mid-thirties, so I'm not giving up on her.

dan's picture

Good for you, Lynn! We need

Good for you, Lynn!

We need a lot more parents who don't give up on their kids.
And, for that matter, other adults who invest in them.

townersaurusrex's picture

if I'm not mistaken some

if I'm not mistaken some white parents have recently won a reverse discrimination case over the same issues you are discussing here. in philly.the gist of it was "minority "students had the freedom to bus out of districts and " non- minority" students did not thus creating a level of inequality as far as access to the better schools are concerned.now i believe that if you can test in you have the same chances as anyone who applies, regardless of race

nhb's picture

lms2357 is right "average"

lms2357 is right "average" or struggling good kids, wind up in Kensington. My oldest 2 are sophomores in High School, 1 goes to girls high & 1 goes to Douglas (admission to Douglas was a last minute call in August last year). But they have a few friends that were "average" went to Kensington HS last year and now they are doing a program online and being home schooled, because they couldn't get into Carroll or one of the others & there parents couldn't afford Catholic High School.

lms2357, Good Luck to your daughter & her future. I am sure with your guidance she will be spectacular.

MichelleLynn's picture

I never heard of Charter

I never heard of Charter Schools requiring grade averages, I thought they were all lottery based, Ithough only Magnet Schools and Vocational Schools were allowed to test for admissions..

I am still in the grade school charter school zone, so that is all news to me..Maybe it is different for high schools.