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Who is StandardsWork? StandardsWork, Inc., a nonprofit education consultancy, helps communities and schools work together to advance meaningful, lasting, and effective standards-based education reform. A singular goal unites all of our efforts: to eliminate low expectations and make teaching and learning more effective for all students.
Academy of the Pacific Rim (Cambridge, MA) Achieve, Inc. (Washington, DC) Allentown (PA) Public Schools American Board for Certification of Teacher Excellence (Washington, DC) Ardmore (OK) Chamber of Commerce - Ardmore Public Schools Arizona Department of Education Arkansas Department of Education - Bentonville (AR) Public Schools California Commission of the Establishment of Academic and Content Standards Center for Education Reform (Washington, DC) Chicago (IL) Public Schools Education Leaders Council (Washington, DC) Elaine & Marvell, Public Schools, (AR) Florida Chamber Foundation Fox River Learning, Inc. (Highland Park, IL) Georgia Department of Education Indiana Commission for Higher Education Kansas City (MO) School District KIPP Academy (Houston, TX, North Carolina and Washington, DC) Macomb (IL) Unit Schools Menasha (WI) Public Schools Maryland Department of Education Montgomery County (PA) Principals Association National Council of Teacher Quality National Education Association (Washington, DC) National Education Goals Panel (Washington, DC) New Hampshire Parent Information Center New York Charter Resource Center Ohio Department of Education Pennsylvania Governors Commission on Academic Standards Pennsylvania’s Southeast Intermediate Unit Pioneer Institute for Public Policy (Boston, MA) Plainview Public Schools, (Ardmore, OK) Public Education Network (Washington, DC) Utah Conference on Learning Standards The Walton Family Foundation (Bentonville, AR) Teton County Public Schools (Jackson, WY) U.S. Department of Education Virginia Department of Education StandardsWork Client List
Advantage Schools The Andre Agassi Foundation Aspire Public Schools Butler 53 School District Brighter Choice Public Charter Schools Chancellor Academies Collegium Public Charter School Communities In Schools of the Lehigh Valley Community Education Partners Green Dot Public Schools Leadership Public Schools Mosaica Education, Inc. National Heritage Academies Terrace Community Middle School HireStandards HireStandards is an executive search program whose purpose is to identify outstanding school leaders and to place them in school and district settings where they can create high-achieving teaching and learning environments for all enrolled students. Client List
Parent Power Works In February of 2003, StandardsWork’s Board of Directors encouraged management to look at how the organization could bring its knowledge, skill, and reputation around standards and accountability to new stakeholder audiences. Given the new rights provided to them under the recently passed No Child Left Behind Act, parents seemed the natural beneficiary. In October, 2003, StandardsWork was awarded a grant from the U.S. Department of Education to establish a Parent Information Resource Center to serve low income parents in Maryland and the District of Columbia.
Three Main Goals of Parent Power Works • Increase the capacity of local organizations to assist parents in finding and interpreting information about their state’s school accountability system and parental rights under No Child Left Behind(NCLB). • Create a well-informed parent population, particularly of low income parents of students in persistently failing schools and parents of pre-school students in those communities. • Encourage parents to exercise their specific rights under NCLB, or become demonstrably and meaningfully involved in improving the quality and responsiveness of their child’s school.
Political Context Although disagreements may exist about the specifics of No Child Left Behind (NCLB) and it’s implementation, Parent Power Works is committed to transcending those disagreements by working on what everyone agrees is important – providing parents with the capacity to effectively advocate for, and directly assist, their children in getting a high quality education.
Activities To Date • Identified communities with needing improvement schools as the focus for year one activities. • Developed a tag line: Be the Power Behind Your Child’s Education. • Created posters and parent brochures (in English & Spanish) and other branded materials. • Established a toll-free phone line: 1-888-ASK-PPWK. • Launched a web site: www.BeThePower.org. • Developed a curriculum for what parents need to know and be able to do to “Be the Power Behind their Child’s Education.” • Developed a training program for community partners. • Initiated relationships with school district personnel for purposes of early notice of sign up deadlines, etc. • Launched a dialogue with supplemental service providers in DC & MD for purposes of encouraging their efforts. • Successfully trained representatives from 20 existing community organizations in No Child Left Behind and the Parent Power Works mission.
What is a Parent Power Works Partner? Our vision is that in each community where there is a concentration of needing improvement schools we will offer “on the ground” support to parents through trained, Parent Power Works-affiliated community organizations. PPW reaches out to a wide variety of community partners -- local businesses, nonprofit agencies, school-based programs, and local government agencies -- and works to build the capacity of such organizations to deliver quality training to parents, engage community leaders, and raise the level of parental involvement in the communities they serve.
Who is a Community Partner? • Has as part of its mission serving parents and/or has a robust parent client group; • Serves parents (and/or their children) who attend one or more of the schools on the state needing improvement list; • Regularly assembles parents for social or educational purposes; • Concludes that PPW’s mission represents a natural extension of the mission of their organization; • Is willing to promote the PPW toll-free number, disseminate materials, and share information about training opportunities and important dates with parents; and • Have staff or volunteer time to dedicate to the effort.
Partner Benefits • Have your activities promoted as part of the ongoing public awareness campaign engaged in by Parent Power Works; • Expand your current services to parents through a well thought out program (one they don’t have to invent) and a coherent set of accompanying materials; • Gain (no cost)access to quality training and informational tools; • Have access to coaching by experienced parent advocates capable of assisting your organization with implementing outreach plans; • Receive financial support for certain outreach activities you may not otherwise be able provide, including training stipends for parents and workshop expenses; and • Affiliate with a well-respected national organization with a reputation for quality and thoroughness.
Community Partner Training • Springs from a set a standards for what parents need to know and be able to do to “Be the Power Behind their Child’s Education;” • Provides opportunity to learn from one another by sharing experiences; • Arms community partners with the confidence to hold parent workshops on their own; and • Provides expert and peer coaching throughout to support partners.
Training Sequence Training Module I. Assessing School Satisfaction GOAL: Parents understand that questioning the capacity of a given school or schooling program to meet their child’s needs is both appropriate and, in some cases, necessary to secure the best education possible. Training Module II. Understanding No Child Left Behind Rights GOAL: Parents understand that they have rights under the No Child Left Behind (NCLB) Act, that exercising these rights will require action on their part, and that the reward will be to secure the best possible education for their child. Training Module III. Critically Assessing School and Student Performance GOAL: Parents understand that No Child Left Behind raises the bar for student and school accountability.
Next Steps • Decide to join Parent Power Works as a community partner. • Identify a key staff person to be the contact and receive training. • Provide information for PPW’s website. • Get enrolled in the next training in your area!