School districts can increase community engagement with a website

Posted on Friday, 3/8/2013 5:56 pm

While teachers and the quality of instruction they deliver certainly play a key role in students' academic achievement, educators are not the only ones who can help kids succeed. Everyone from parents to business owners in a school district's community can make a positive difference in students' lives. 

For this reason, school systems that find ways to engage their local community and keep people informed of the latest district developments could be helping students. One of the best ways for school districts to accomplish this is to use faculty software and create a website.

The benefits of having a website
Whether people use a computer or a smartphone to connect to the internet, there is no denying that the web is where many adults go to find information, including anything that pertains to their children. As a result, it just makes sense for school districts to keep families and community members informed through regular updates on their official websites.

"A school web page can provide information for everyone in the school community," Mary Kreul, an educational-technology professional, told Education World. "It can showcase student achievements and projects; provide valuable web links for students, teachers and parents; and give an overview of the goals and curriculum of a school. A school web page can be a marvelous public relations tool for a single school or an entire school district."

Perhaps a school district will be holding an information session on its implementation of the Common Core State Standards, or it is looking for help organizing a fundraiser to raise money for new classroom materials. Either way, having this information available over the internet can only increase communication between educators and members of the community.

The benefits of more community engagement
Past evidence has shown that when parents and other community members take an active interest in what goes on in their school districts, students can reap the rewards. Higher grades, better attendance and improved social skills are among the possible results of higher engagement levels, according to the National Education Association (NEA).

"When schools, families and community groups work together to support learning, children tend to do better in school, stay in school longer and like school more," reads the conclusion of a 2002 report from the Southwest Educational Development Laboratory, as quoted by the NEA's website.

With this information in mind, any school districts that have yet to establish an online presence may want to do so soon.

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