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St. Bonaventure University

Andrews leads focus group for new parent support program

Oct 07, 2021 |

Dr. Kathryn J. Andrews, assistant professor of childhood education, and Kathryn Mendell, LMSW, community schools resource coordinator for Cattaraugus-Allegany BOCES, led a focus group with regional administrators and staff of elementary schools as part of a newly formed parent support & education program. 
 
The program is a Cattaraugus-Allegany BOCES Community Schools effort to re-evaluate family engagement. Members of the program are voting on the name of the program. 
 
Andrews provides this overview: In the wake of COVID-19, there is an apparent need to restore how schools view parent involvement in education. Parent involvement has always mattered but pandemic protocols have largely ignored parental views on student safety, well-being and overall academic engagement at a time when parents assumed a critical role in the day-to-day tasks of their child’s education. 
 
The goal of the initiative is to help schools consider meaningful strategies to include parents and families in developing home-school connections while respecting parental authority.