School Guide to Using For Our Families Toolkit

This document introduces schools to the purpose and content of the “For Our Families” toolkit. Most schools and districts have the contents embedded in their values and beliefs on how to support families. This guide pulls on these common beliefs in providing ideas and resources for families.    

Purpose of the Toolkit

The toolkit is a series of one-page documents to support the needs of families. It contains videos and text resources as well as provides simple first steps for parents to consider. The toolkit focuses on three areas.

Starting the Conversation

This toolkit provides schools with an opportunity to open and reopen conversations with families about their central role in maximizing the learning journey of their child. Schools can share this toolkit with families as a means of beginning the conversation about how they can best work together. 

  • Consider sharing this with families new to the district at enrollment
  • Provide this resource to families in multiple ways
  • Use parts of this toolkit to meet individual family needs.

Syncing these Ideas with Other Programming

Many schools and districts have excellent wrap-around services that include counselors, social workers, and community partners that can meet the needs of students and families. This toolkit is designed to sync with these resources and supplement the information currently available. 

  • Share this document with all of those that provide services
  • Allow this toolkit to be a resource for parent organizations
  • Look for areas where this syncs with other efforts and use as a supplement.

Growing the Resource

This toolkit can be an anchor resource on these topics, as it is brief and rich with links and videos to make it accessible for parents. A school or district can build on this resource by: 

  • Identifying and adding additional resources on these topics
  • Get feedback from families about what else they need
  • Expand both written and video resources.

Developing Norms in Other Areas 

This toolkit can help to develop a set of norms between families and schools around how to best partner, communicate and care. This language can be powerful as it allows all to work from a place of mutual understanding. Other areas that could benefit from developing common language and norms are: 

  • Mastery of standards
  • Grading practices
  • Focus on life-long skills for success
  • Use of technology for learning.

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