• Title-I, Part A is part of the Every Student Succeeds Act

    The Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) serves as the latest reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA) which was last reauthorized in 2002 as the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). Since its inception, the intent of the law has been to raise achievement for low-income and otherwise disadvantaged children. Parent and family engagement and consultation have always been a key piece of the law.

    ESSA defines the term "parent" to include a "legal guardian or other person standing in loco parentis (such as a grandparent or stepparent with whom the child lives, or a person who is legally responsible for the child's welfare)."

    Title I Parent and Family Engagement Set-Aside:

    Each district is required to reserve at least one percent of its Title I funds to carry out parent and family engagement activities, including those described in the written policy section below. Ninety (90) percent of these “set-aside” funds must be distributed to schools, with priority given to “high-need” schools. The law further requires that parents and family members of low-income students must be included in decisions regarding how these engagement funds are spent.

    These parent and family engagement funds must be used for at least one of the activities below:

    • Supporting schools in training school staff regarding engagement strategies;
    • Supporting programs that reach families at home, in the community and at school;
    • Disseminating information on best practices focused on engagement, especially for increasing engagement of economically disadvantaged families;
    • Subgranting schools to collaborate with community-based organizations or businesses that have a track record of improving family engagement; or
    • Engaging in any other activities that the district believes are appropriate in increasing engagement.

    As amended, this Act provides financial resources for schools and or local agencies with large percentages of children from low-income families. These financial resources support things such as:

    • Family Engagement
    • Additional Teachers
    • Instructional Aides
    • Reading and Math Intervention
    • Technology to support classroom instruction

    Title I Schools: The school parent and family engagement policy must describe how the school will:

    • Convene an annual meeting, at a convenient time to which all parents of low-income students are invited and encouraged to attend, to inform parents that their school receives Title I funds, that these funds come with requirements, and that parents have a right to be involved;
    • Offer a flexible number of engagement meetings at convenient times for families (for which the school may provide transportation, child care, or home visits using Title I funds);
    • Provide parents and families with:
    • Information about Title I-funded programs;
    • An explanation of the curriculum and achievement levels the school uses; and
    • If requested, opportunities for regular meetings to participate in decisions relating to the education of their students;
    • Jointly develop with parents of low-income students a school-parent compact that outlines how families, school, staff and students will share the responsibility for improved student academic achievement and develop a partnership to help students achieve state standards. 
    • The compact must:
      • Describe the school's responsibility to provide high-quality curriculum and instruction in a supportive and effective learning environment that enables students to meet the academic achievement standards, and the ways in which each parent will be responsible for supporting learning, including volunteering in their child’s classroom, and participating in decisions relating to the education of their children;
      • Address the importance of communication between families and staff through, at a minimum:
        • parent-teacher conferences in elementary schools, at least annually, during which the compact will be discussed as the compact relates to the individual child's achievement;
        • frequent reports to parents on their children's progress; and
        • opportunities to volunteer at their child's school and observe their child's class
      • Ensure regular two-way meaningful communication between family members and school staff in a language they understand.
      • Ensure effective involvement of parents and support a partnership among the school, families and community to improve student academic achievement through the following required and allowed activities:
        • Required:
          • Providing assistance to parents in understanding such topics as the state’s academic standards, state and local academic assessments, the requirements of Title I and how to monitor a child's progress and work with educators;
          • Providing materials and training to help parents to work with their children to improve their children's achievement;
          • Educating school personnel, with the assistance of parents, in the value and utility of the contributions of parents, and in how to reach out to, communicate with, and work with parents as equal partners;
          • Integrating engagement strategies with other federal and state programs, including preschool programs;
    • Ensuring that information related to programs, meetings, and other activities is sent to parents and families in a format and a language parents can understand;
    • Providing other reasonable support for engagement activities to remove barriers to participation, such as childcare, transportation and translation services;
    • Providing opportunities for the informed participation of families with limited English proficiency or disabilities, and families of migratory children in a format and language they understand; and
    • Providing reasonable support for parental engagement activities as parents request them.

    For more information, please contact:

    Tracy Hill, M.Ed.
    Executive Director