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Classroom Technology

4 Tips for Building Family Engagement

It should be no surprise that like most everything else, technology has had — and continues to have — a huge impact on education. Teachers are harnessing technology to bring learning alive and deliver personalized instruction to students. Students are using technology to research subjects and connect with people and places around the world.

Integrating technology in the classroom is essential to developing the skills our students need to be competitive and thrive. But technology isn’t just advancing teaching and learning — it’s also improving communication among educators, administrators and families, and helping to strengthen family-school partnerships.

Through advancements in technology, it’s becoming increasingly more convenient for families to be involved in their children’s education and to engage in regular communication with teachers and school staff. Try these technology tips to enhance your family engagement and family-school communication:

1. Use parent portals

Schools can use their parent portal to share calendars, assignments and activities. Parent portals allow families to access information quickly, easily and when it’s most convenient for them.

2. Make it simple

Portals, apps and other communication tools should be easily accessible for both families and school staff. Evaluate what’s working and what’s not to eliminate barriers to engagement. For instance, are your school websites and parent portals mobile-friendly?

3. Share info on social media

Many parents are active on social media, and teachers and schools can use Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to deliver news and important updates, promote school pride and share pictures from various activities.

4. Communicate in real time

We can share and access information faster than ever before through texting and community message alerts. These notifications can be delivered directly to a parent’s smartphone and many systems are used for real-time conversations and news to keep the school community informed and engaged.

Heidi May Wilson, Senior Manager of Media Relations, National PTA, [email protected]

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