Title I Parent & Family Engagement Policy & Compact

Purpose of this Policy and Compact

Efforts will be made to clearly articulate the school’s intentions to engage with and involve parents/caregivers in the educational process.

Bren Mar Park Elementary is a Title I school within Fairfax County Public Schools’ (FCPS) and utilizes the Title I grant to improve student achievement and help all students meet the objectives of the FCPS Program of Studies and the Virginia Standards of Learning. A partnership with families is essential to meeting this goal.

Under Title I, Part A of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, schools that receive Title I funds are expected to collaborate with families to develop and maintain a parent and family engagement policy that describes the school’s approach to involve families in students’ learning and includes a compact expressing the partnerships among staff, caregivers, and students to reach high academic goals for every student. 

Bren Mar Park Elementary jointly developed this policy and compact with members of the school community and adopted it for the 2023-2024 school year. Several the provisions specifically address state or federal expectations for the policy and compact.

This policy and compact is distributed to all caregivers in a language that families can understand. Caregivers have opportunities to provide comments and feedback on the policy and compact through parent coffees, feedback surveys, and PTA meetings. Comments are submitted with the school’s policy and compact to FCPS central offices and the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE). This policy and compact are made available to the broader school community through the school website.

Important Dates       

Parent-Teacher Conferences                                                 

  • November 7, 2023

Progress Report Distribution

  • November 16, 2023 
  • February 8, 2024
  • April 11, 2024
  • June 12, 2024

Home-School Events

  • Curriculum Info Sessions:  Thurs., Sept 21 @ 6:30 p.m.
  • Family Field Trip:  Sat., Oct. 14 @ 5:00 p.m.
  • Family Social Emotional Learning Night: Thurs., Oct. 19 @ 6:30 p.m.
  • Family Math Night:  Thurs., Nov.16 @ 6:30 p.m.
  • Winter Sing-A-Long:  Friday, Dec. 15 @ 9:30 & 10:30 a.m.
  • Day of Service:  Mon., Jan. 15 @ 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
  • Celebrating Cultural Stories:  Thurs., Jan. 18 @ 6:30 p.m.
  • Sweets with Those We Love:  Wed., Feb. 14 @ 8:00 a.m.
  • Family Dance Night:  Fri., Feb. 23 @ 6:30 p.m.
  • Family Literacy Night:  Thurs., March 21 @ 6:30 p.m.
  • Family Game Night:  Thurs., April 18 @ 6:30 p.m.
  • International Night:   Fri., May 31 @ 6:30 p.m.

Building Capacity for Engagement

Efforts will be made to ensure parents/caregivers are actively involved in the development, implementation, monitoring, and evaluation of the school’s Title I program, including the following:

  • Welcome students’ and family members’ voices in decision-making on a variety of committees.
  • Invite family input on the School Improvement and Innovation Plan (SIIP), Comprehensive Needs Assessment (CNA), the Title I Parent and Family Engagement Policy and Compact, and other Title I decisions.
  • Offer multiple methods for families to share thoughts, comments, and questions about programs and the opportunity to submit any such comments to the Region 6 office.
  • Invite family members to build collective ownership by helping organize a variety of school events, such as Family Coffees, Celebrating Cultural Stories, 5th Grade Promotion ceremony, and PTA events.
  • Welcome families within the school in various ways, such as providing volunteer opportunities (such as in the PTA, library, classrooms, cafeteria, the Book Fair, etc.) as well as to visit (join child for lunch, invitations to the classrooms for special events, etc.)
  • Encourage families to participate in the annual evaluation of the division-level Title I parent and family engagement policy in order to identify:
    • barriers to greater family participation,
    • ways to help family members be better able to assist in student learning, and
    • strategies to support successful school and family interactions.

Effective Communication with Families

Efforts will be made to ensure parents/guardians receive meaningful communication in a timely manner, including the following:

  • Use multiple methods of communication to families such as Talking Points” text messages, emails/phone calls, Sunday morning News You Choose school newsletter, Family Coffees, and Twitter.   
  • Encourage caregivers to attend an annual meeting on September 21, 2023, to share information about Title I services, explain Title I grant requirements, and inform families of their right to be involved in school.
  • Share school and student performance data with families in ways that seek their ideas about how to improve performance toward Virginia’s challenging academic standards, such as ensuring children regularly participate in school, read, and how technology is taught and used as a part of school.
  • Provide opportunities throughout the year for families to better understand the school’s goals for students and find ways to improve student learning by providing input through the PTA, participating in the Family Math and Literacy Nights, and welcoming family feedback (i.e. surveys). 
  • Provide resources for caregivers to review student assignments and ongoing communication about student work, such as weekly communication envelopes and Schoology platforms.
  • Provide regular feedback on student progress through quarterly progress reports that show specific areas of proficiency and areas for continued growth.
  • Hold teacher conferences for all students at least annually in the fall.  These conferences may be in-person, virtual, or over the phone to best meet family needs.

Shared Responsibilities for High Academic Achievement

Efforts will be made to ensure parents/caregivers receive materials, training, and benefits from school partnerships with social and academic services, community-based organizations, and businesses, including the following:

  • Hold workshops connecting caregivers to tools and resources, such as Family Coffees, HIPPY, and Family Engagement Nights. 
  • Offer regular opportunities for families to learn directly from school staff about the school’s academic, behavioral, and social programming.
  • Encourage participation in family learning events where caregivers learn strategies to support their child’s learning at home and have a chance to practice those strategies with their child, such as with the Family Liaison, Family Learning Nights, and Family Coffees.
  • Provide access to resources in the school, such as technology and the library database.  
  • Coordinate student mentors for students, as needed, though the MentorWorks program.  
  • Provide opportunities to donate and access supplies donated by others, such as backpacks, Family Markets, and weekend food packs.
  • Strive to increase partnerships with local businesses and organizations to enhance school programs and events, to include possible donations, volunteer hours, and/or mentoring/tutoring opportunities.
  • Support families in accessing county and community resources, such as employment, Free and Reduced Lunch, REC Pac, clinics, and important documents through our Family Liaison and social worker.
  • Offer outreach and training for targeted families, such as HIPPY and the “Benefits of Being Bilingual”. 

Welcoming All Families 

Efforts will be made to ensure that all parents/caregivers are welcomed and provided opportunities to actively engage within the school, including the following:

  • Create a welcoming atmosphere at the school with decor that celebrate the diversity in languages represented at Bren Mar Park, bilingual signage throughout the school and communications translated.
  • Provide interpretation services for teacher conferences, workshops, and meetings.
  • Translate or provide interpretation of school documents and communication to make them accessible in the caregiver’s preferred correspondence language and for those with vision or hearing impairments.
  • Support two-way communication between families and staff through assistance of a Family Liaison for conferences, News You Choose school newsletters, the school’s Title 1 representative, and the PTA.
  • Expand access for family participation in informational meetings and learning sessions through the provision of interpreters and translated documents as possible. 

Compact Provisions

School staff, parents/caregivers, and students must work together to ensure a student success. 

The staff will:

Provide a high-quality curriculum and instruction that enables students to meet challenging academic standard through the following actions:

  • Teach all students according to the state’s challenging standards, using approved curriculum resources.
  • Provide ongoing professional development and support to all teachers to ensure effective instructional practices are used in all classrooms, including the continued implementation of meaningful technology use.
  • Utilize the structures of a Professional Learning Community and Collaborative Team meetings to plan for high-quality instruction.
  • Implement instructional and content coaching and increase collaborative practices.

Provide a supportive and effective learning environment for students through the following actions:

  • Continue to recalibrate and rebuild community, with a focus on building strong relationships and social-emotional resiliency.
  • Provide clear expectations for student behavior and academic learning.
  • Offer a variety of resources to help students with their learning.
  • Build intervention/enrichment time into the school day.

Provide assistance to caregivers in understanding the school’s program through the following actions:

  • Increase outreach to diverse and multilingual families through the use of apps such as TalkingPoints, translated communications, and phone calls which may include interpretation services.
  • Hold an annual meeting to present information on the school’s Title I programs, state and division curriculum and assessments, and the school’s state and federal accountability status.
  • Provide multiple opportunities for caregivers to ask questions and give input into the Title I programs.
  • Host accessible opportunities, such as Family Coffees and PTA Meetings, in concurrent platforms.
  • Host Family Coffee and Family Engagement Nights.

Build caregivers’ involvement in the school’s Title I program through the following actions:

  • Include caregivers as collaborators in developing the School Improvement and Innovation Plan (SIIP)and use of Title I family engagement funds.
  • Provide caregivers opportunities to provide feedback on the SIIP and the Title1 family engagement plans.
  • Increase outreach to share SIIP with more parents/caregivers at PTA meetings and Family Conversations.

The parents/caregivers will:

Participate in my child’s education to help his or her achievement through the following actions:

  • Work with teacher to make decisions related to my child’s education.
  • Share my questions or comments about the programs in my child’s school.
  • Volunteer or participate in my child’s classroom or in school activities, as my schedule allows.
  • Encourage and support my child’s learning at home and at school. 
  • Expect, review, and respond to outreach by the school.
  • Provide feedback, complete surveys, and communicate with my child’s teacher to give input for my child’s learning.

The student will:

Share the responsibility to improve my academic learning to achieve the state’s challenging standards through the following’s actions:

  • Get enough sleep every night.
  • Come to school on time unless I am sick. 
  • Show respect, a positive attitude, and try my hardest.
  • Ask the teacher if I have questions or need help and learn from my mistakes.
  • Give my family the notes from my teacher; give my teacher notes from my family.