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1 The Early Childhood Family Engagement Framework: Maryland’s Vision for Engaging Families with Young Children Jeffrey Capizzano President Maryland State Advisory Council on Early Childhood Education and Care Baltimore, Maryland July 11 th, 2013 © Copyright 2012 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.
The Maryland Family Engagement Coalition © Copyright 2011 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.3 Co-Chairs Margaret E. Williams, Maryland Family Network Paul Pittman, Head Start of Washington County MSDE Liaison and Project Officer: Linda Zang Broad statewide membership (public and private) Maryland Ready At Five CentroNía Judy Center Partnerships Public Library Assoc. UM School of Medicine PTA Maryland Coalition of Families School Districts American Association of Pediatrics Head Start Maryland Child Care Assoc. MSDE Dept. of Health and Mental Health Dept. Human Resources
Why develop the framework? © Copyright 2011 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.4 Proposed as Project 8 of Maryland’s RTT—ELC grant To highlight the importance of family engagement as a core area of early childhood that promotes school readiness To better coordinate the state’s family engagement initiatives, and to create a set of common goals for the allocation of family engagement resources across the early childhood system To promote family engagement strategies at the program and provider level and to highlight available resources that support the implementation of those family engagement strategies
© Copyright 2011 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.5
Organization of the Framework © Copyright 2011 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.7 Articulates a common definition of family engagement Outlines common goals for family engagement applicable to the state and to programs/providers Offers general strategies to support the goals Includes resources to support the implementation of the strategies Provides examples of family engagement practices in Maryland
Definition © Copyright 2011 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.9 Family engagement is a shared responsibility of families, schools, and communities for student learning and achievement; it is continuous from birth into the school-age years; and it occurs across the various early care and learning settings where children are. Family engagement means building relationships with families that support family well-being, strong parent-child relationships, and the ongoing learning and development of parents and children alike. It encompasses the beliefs, attitudes, behaviors, and activities of early care settings and families that support their children’s positive development. Family engagement happens in the home, early childhood settings, school, and community. Sustainable family engagement operates with adequate resources, including public- private partnerships, to ensure meaningful and effective strategies that have the power to impact student learning and achievement.
Maryland Framework uses the 7 goals of the Head Start Framework © Copyright 2011 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.10 Goal 1. Family engagement initiatives should promote family well-being. Maryland’s family engagement initiatives and the practices of early care and education providers should promote the safety, health, and financial security of families so that they can successfully parent their young children. Goal 2. Family engagement initiatives should promote positive parent–child relationships. Maryland’s initiatives and the practices of early care and education providers should, beginning with the transition to parenthood, support parents and families in developing warm relationships with their children that nurture learning and development
Maryland Framework uses the 7 goals of the Head Start Framework © Copyright 2011 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.11 Goal 3. Family engagement initiatives should support families as lifelong educators of their children Maryland initiatives and the practices of early care and education providers should support and empower the family in its role as first teacher Goal 4: Family engagement initiatives should support the educational aspirations of parents and families Maryland initiatives and the practices of early care and education providers should support parents and families to advance their own education, training, and other experiences that support their parenting, careers, and life goals
Maryland Framework uses the 7 goals of the Head Start Framework © Copyright 2011 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.12 Goal 5. Family engagement initiatives should support families through the care and education transitions of early childhood. Maryland initiatives and the practices of early care and education providers should support families as they make transitions with their children to new learning environments. Goal 6: Family engagement initiatives should connect families to their peers and to the community. Parents and families form connections with peers and mentors in formal or informal social networks that are supportive and/or educational and that enhance social well-being and community life.
Maryland Framework uses the 7 goals of the Head Start Framework © Copyright 2011 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.13 Goal 7: Family engagement initiatives should support the development of families as leaders and child advocates. Maryland initiatives and the family engagement practices of early care and education providers should support families to participate in leadership development, decision-making, program policy development, and community and state organizing activities to improve children’s development and learning experiences.
Strategies © Copyright 2011 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.14 Document outlines several strategies organized by program foundation and program impact areas Examples of program foundation strategies include: Leadership Develop relationships with community members and community organizations that support families’ interests and needs Professional Development Provide training on multicultural principles, leadership development, and advocacy for staff and families
Strategies © Copyright 2011 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.15 Examples of impact area strategies include: Environment Include family-friendly spaces with pictures and materials that affirm and welcome all families Teaching and Learning Consistently gather child information from families and ask parents about their child to inform teaching Exchange information with parents about their children’s social, emotional, and cognitive development, and talk about the importance of the home language Share information with families about resources and services for children with disabilities and special health needs
Resources © Copyright 2011 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.16 References and resources from nationally known organizations: Head Start Center on Parent, Family, and Community Engagement Harvard Family Research Project National Black Child Development Institute National Center for Early Development & Learning (NCEDL) Kindergarten Project Electronic version of the document includes “hot links” that allow the reader to access resources immediately Includes a “resource catalogue” that is constantly being updated
Maryland examples © Copyright 2011 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.17 Broad representation from different stakeholders Family Support Centers Reach Out and Read Learning Parties Every Child Ready to Read @ Your Library Family Engagement in Maryland’s Head Start Programs Family Engagement in Maryland’s Judy Centers Examples are linked back to Framework goals and RTT—ELC funding where applicable
Next Steps: Implementation Memo © Copyright 2011 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.19 Create a self-assessment How well are the state and individual programs meeting the family engagement goals articulated in the Framework? Use Framework to inform other parts of Maryland’s early childhood system (e.g. EXCELS) Use as the foundation for a Family Engagement Conference Develop training and technical assistance around key strategies Explore innovative uses of technology in meeting goals (e.g., sharing assessment data)
Discussion and Contact Information JeffreyC@PolicyEquity.com www.PolicyEquity.com © Copyright 2011 Policy Equity Group. All Rights Reserved.20
The Readiness Centers Initiative Early Education and Care Board Meeting Tuesday, May 11, 2010.
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GREAT BEGINNINGS: OUR PLAN FOR KINDERGARTEN READINESS Governor’s Office of Early Childhood.
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