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Families, schools are working together for student success

Supporting students takes everyone working together, and in rural Appalachian communities, gaining the support of parents and families is essential to student success.

“Our mantra at Partners for Education is, the partnership between schools and families is critical,” said Rochelle Garrett, director of family engagement. “It is all about the partnerships that help students to succeed academically.”

Nov. 18 – 22 has been designated as Family Engagement Week.

School superintendents have been encouraged to sign proclamations, showing a commitment to engaging parents, grandparents, and non-traditional families in their student’s academic success.

Garrett says, “Research tells us when families are involved in their student’s educational opportunities, those students do better on tests, have better attendance, and go on to post-secondary education.”

In an effort to increase family engagement, schools across Eastern Kentucky will offer a variety of activities and events for families, students, and schools to come together in a positive, uplifting way.

“We want families to know learning doesn’t only occur in the schools,” Garrett said. “Family Engagement Week is that opportunity to remind families that learning also happens at home.”

For more information about Family Engagement Week or to find out where events will be taking place, contact Grace McKenzie at mckenzieg@berea.edu or (859) 985-4124.

Family Engagement Week is an initiative that aligns with National Parent Involvement Day.

This year, Partners for Appalachian Families (PFAF) is launching a website during Family Engagement week to attract more attention to the effort. PFAF is funded by a five-year, $5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education and is in partnership with the Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence and Partners for Education at Berea College.

Partners for Education at Berea College uses a place based, student focused approach to improve educational outcomes in Appalachian Kentucky. By braiding services and aligning federal, state and private funding streams, Partners for Education works to ensure all Appalachian students succeed.

For more information about the grant and Partnership for Appalachian Families, contact Becca Parrish at parrishr@berea.edu or (859) 985-3633.

For more information about the Pritchard Committee contact Brooke Gill at gill@prichardcommittee.org or (859) 233-9849.