Family Engagement Policy 2017-2018

Family Engagement Policy 2017-2018

Statement of Purpose

DeSoto West Middle School (WMS) is dedicated to the success of all students. The faculty and staff believe in the importance of having our families as vital partners in the education of their children. At WMS, we believe that family engagement is essential to the success of our children and welcome the opportunity to work toward establishing a working relationship with our families.

As a campus, we are committed to:

·         Respecting families as partners in the education of their children and honoring their role as first and life-long teachers; increasing the capacity of our school personnel to work in partnership with their families

·         Expecting high academic achievement for all students

·         Promoting family engagement through site-based leadership and partnered decision-making

·         Fostering a welcoming and responsive environment for all family members

·         Establishing and promoting open communication as a source of information and trust between the WMS faculty and staff and the families we serve

·         Providing the means, whenever possible, for the participation of families with barriers to participation that include, but are not limited to, limited English proficiency, disabilities, or migratory status

·         Informing families if their children have been taught for four (4) or more consecutive weeks by a teacher who is not highly qualified within the meaning of the term in section 200.56 of the Title I Final Regulations (67 Fed. Reg. 71710, December 2, 2002)

As a campus, we adopt the following definition of “family involvement” when developing strategies and programs to promote family engagement (adapted from the statutory definition of “parental involvement”, where “parent” has been replaced by “family”.).

                Family involvement means the participation of family members in regular, two-way, and meaningful communication involving student academic learning and other school activities, including ensuring:

                (A)  that families play an integral role in assisting their child’s learning

                (B)  that families are encouraged to be actively involved in their child’s education at school

(C)  that families are full partners in their child’s education and are included, as appropriate, in decision-making and on advisory committees to assist in the education of their child

(D)  the carrying out of other activities as described in section 1118 of the ESEA (Elementary School Education Act).

DMS commitment to providing a means for this meaningful two-way communication includes, but is not limited to:  e-mail, school and individual teacher phone extensions and voice mail boxes, school and individual teacher web sites, daily conference periods available to schedule meeting times with teachers, communication in a language understood by families whenever practicable, faculty and staff training to enhance school-home partnerships, commitment to responding to family inquiries within a 24 hour period whenever practicable, etc.


Family Involvement in Developing the Policy

The Campus Education Improvement Committee (CEIC) will review and revise the Family Engagement Policy.  The CEIC will be comprised of families, teachers, staff members, administrators, and community members.  The opportunity to serve on this committee will be publicized and representative of the diversity among our families served. 

In addition, if needed, all family members of existing students will be invited to participate in a review and revision process at the end of every academic year (April-May) in preparation for the following year.  Options for input can include: day and evening meeting times, take home feedback forms to submit, etc.


Family Engagement Opportunities

DMS values the formal and informal partnership of families in their children’s education. There are many ways families can make significant contributions to student success at home, at school, and in general. We seek to coordinate and integrate family engagement opportunities with other programs of the school.  In addition, DMS will seek to increase both the school’s and families’ capacity to increase family involvement.  These include, but are not limited to participation in the following activities:


Meet the Teacher Night                      Parent Education Workshops               PTA meetings/events                      Field Day              

Parent math/science Nights               Drama/choir performances                    Volunteer Trainings                         Holiday Parties

Open House                                         Coffee with the Counselors                  Watch D.O.G.S. Dads                     Field Trips


Reservation of Funds

DMS will set aside at least 1% of its Title I funds for the purpose of supporting its family engagement program. The administration will consult with the CEIC regarding the use of these funds designated for family engagement.





Annual Meetings

DMS will hold Meet the Teacher/Curriculum Night during the first few weeks of the school year. Here:

1.     the Title I program will be described and school performance information will be shared

2.     the Family Engagement Policy will be distributed, discussed, and reviewed

3.     school curriculum and forms of academic assessment used to measure children’s progress will be discussed

4.     the proficiency levels students are expected to achieve will be reviewed

5.     opportunities for family engagement will be presented and explained.  Family members will be encouraged to express interest in serving in decision-making bodies of the school, including the CEIC.

Additional Title I meetings will be held throughout the year at varying times and all families are welcome and encouraged to attend; in addition, the campus principal will hold a brown bag lunch to discuss topics associated with being a Title I campus during the first nine weeks of school. Suggestions made and input received during these meetings will be considered in decision-making throughout the year and at practicable times based on the nature of the suggestions/input.  Families will be informed about the meetings by email, school web site, school Facebook page, school messenger, newsletters (including the weekly “Trail Mix” provided by the campus principal), and/or notices sent home with students, etc.


School-Home Compact

DMS will work with the CEIC to annually develop, review, and revise the school-home compact. This compact will identify the responsibilities of the school to provide high-level curriculum and instruction, and the expectations of the parents to provide support in their child’s learning. The compacts will be distributed on the school website and/or sent home with students, and will be discussed at parent-teacher (P-T) conferences (at the first P-T conference for 5th grade students).



With the involvement of families, DMS will conduct an annual evaluation of the content and success of the school family engagement policy on the level of parent participation and perception. This evaluation will include identifying barriers to greater participation by families. The school will use evaluation findings to design strategies for more effective family engagement programming, and to revise, if necessary, its family engagement policies. Evaluation procedures include the following:

·         input from the campus CEIC and its members

·         annually survey families to determine the level of participation and to identify barriers that have prevented participation (Annual Family Satisfaction Survey with hard copy and online formats being made available in a language understood by families whenever practicable);

·         annually use survey results, volunteer data base, and other resources as baseline data for the upcoming year (Analysis used in making changes from year to year);

·         establish a family engagement goal for the upcoming school year;

·         develop and implement strategies to increase family engagement based on evaluation results.



DMS is committed to the success of all students. We will work together with our families and community to monitor the effectiveness of our Family Engagement and Title I programs with the goal of providing excellence in education for each of our students.



This Family Engagement Policy has been developed jointly with, and greed upon with, families of CTIS (a campus-wide Title I program provider), as evidenced by family invitations and responses, suggestions for  changes from the Family Engagement Specialist based on state requirements, CEIC meeting agenda and associated feedback, and signatures below. 


This Family Engagement Policy was adopted by DMS on August 28th_, 2018 and will be in effect for the duration of the 2018-2019 school year.  The school will distribute this policy to all families on or before September 9, 2013.




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DMS Representative                                                                                                           Date


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DMS Family Representative                                                                                              Date

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