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Family Engagement

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Family Engagement

Review of Family Engagement definition, framework, and resources

Family Engagement

Family engagement is a collaborative relationship between families, educators, providers, and partners to support and improve the learning, development, and health of every learner. Explore MDE's family engagement definition, the family engagement framework, and family engagement resources.

MiFamily: Michigan's Family Engagement Framework

MiFamily: Michigan's Family Engagement Framework provides programs and schools research and best practices to further improve and develop family engagement.

The framework was developed by an MDE stakeholder's committee, inclusive of MDE staff and program, school, and community leaders, and in partnership with the Council of Chief State School Officers and the National Association for Family, School, and Community Engagement. The MiFamily document is offered as the first in a series of support documents to help parents and guardians as they engage and support their child's learning.

Explore MiFamily

Family Engagement Principles

Continuum of Family Engagement principles

Relationships are the Cornerstone of Family Engagement

  • Offer getting-to-know-you meetings in smaller, informal settings. 
  • Make relationship-building home visits. 
  • Co-design with families a pre-school-elementary school transition program.  
  • Create welcoming spaces in the program and schools. 
  • Learn the names of all families. 
  • Develop parent advisory committees. 

Families are Engaged and Supported Partners in their Child's Education

  • Peer-to-peer family groups. 
  • Volunteer opportunities. 
  • Linking families to community resources. 
  • Provide leadership opportunities for families. 
  • Parent-Teacher Home Visiting Program. 
  • Student-led conferences. 
  • Curriculum showcases.

Family Engagement Efforts are Purposeful, Intentional, and Clearly Identify Learner Outcomes

  • Share how families can engage children in interactive play, reading, and hands-on math activities that promote problem-solving. 
  • Invite families to visit the after-school program, meet staff, and join the activities. 
  • Host "classroom visits" for families to see firsthand what their kids are doing in class and how the classroom is set up for linking learning to current events. 

Family Engagement Efforts are Tailored to Address all Families so all Learners are Successful

  • Talk about the skills that will help children upon their transition to kindergarten and discuss children's progress with families regularly. 
  • Explain your school or program's high achievement goals and ask families about their ideas to help their kids reach them. 
  • Seek barriers and remove them.

Positive Learning Environments Contribute to Family Engagement and Learning

  • Provide opportunities for parent and student input on Title I school-parent compacts to make them more personalized.
  • Respond to what students say about social and emotional issues.
  • In middle and high school, set up an advisory system, so that all students have someone who knows them well and who can be their advocate in the school and the primary contact for their families.

Contact the Family Engagement Core Team for More Information:

Shanon Everett, 517-335-4092
Noel Kelty, 517-241-7004
Scott Martin, 517-335-1745
Al Thomas, 517-241-6970