No Child Left Behind

Parent Involvement Policies for Schools and School Districts

The NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND (NCLB) ACT of 2001 is a federal law to improve education for all children. It holds schools responsible for results, gives parents greater choices, and promotes teaching methods that work. This fact sheet will point out a part of the law that is important for parents to know.

Your child’s school and district have a plan for involving you.

Title I, which is part of the NCLB law, is the largest federal elementary and secondary education program. Title I funds help educators improve teaching and learning in economically disadvantaged communities. Because parents are so important for children’s success, Title I schools and school districts must have a plan that makes parents partners in their children’s education. This written plan, called a parent involvement policy, is required at the district and school level. Title I charter schools must also have a parent involvement policy.

What’s in a Parent Involvement Policy?

A parent involvement policy tells you how the school will work with you and other parents to help all the students in the school meet high academic standards. It tells you—

  • what your rights and responsibilities are as a parent;
  • what schools and parents are each supposed to do to help students achieve (a school-parent compact);
  • when the annual Title I and other parent meetings will be held;
  • how the school will communicate with you and other parents;
  • what learning goals students are expected to meet;
  • how student progress is measured;
  • how parents will be included in the review, update, and evaluation of the policy;
  • what materials and training are available to help you work with your child;
  • what resources, such as transportation and child care, may be available so you can participate in school events;
  • how teachers and parents can learn from each other;
  • how you can learn about other programs for your family, such as family literacy and early childhood programs; and
  • how the New York Parent Information and Resource Centers can help you.

Schools must, to the extent practicable, give parents information that they can understand, even if parents speak languages other than English or have difficulty reading.

Your involvement can make a difference in your child’s school.

  • Ask your child’s school principal for a copy of the district and school parent involvement policy.
  • Ask as many questions as you need to understand the school’s parent involvement policy. You can ask the school principal, the Title I director in the school or district office, the district superintendent, school board members, parent leaders, and other parents.
  • As a parent, you can help write or update your school or district’s parent involvement policy.

This is one of a series of NY parent information sheets about the federal education law No Child Left Behind. Section 1118 of No Child Left Behind covers parent involvement policies.

For more “…Facts”:

Last Updated: September 21, 2009