Research has shown that families are essential to student and school success. One way to do that is through Home Visits, which were developed by parents and teachers based on community organizing principles of empowerment. Our home visits help to remove barriers, build trust and communication, with a common goal… the success of the student. As we continue to grow and prioritize family engagement, we work to remove barriers such as language, through the use of our Bilingual Community Liaisons who participate when an interpreter is needed.
There are 5 non-negotiable practices that make up the home visit model and meet the needs of our staff and educators:
- Visits are voluntary for staff and families and arranged in advance - Visits are not “one more thing” to be done, but something teachers look forward to and arranged during times that work best for teachers and families.
- Staff is trained and compensated - Training prepares staff to build authentic relationships with families and dictates that staff are compensated for visits outside of the school day to demonstrate value and respect for their time.
- Visits are always done in teams of two - Professional learning continues as teacher teams share reflections about what they learned about the student and how to incorporate that into classroom instruction.
- Visits are done with a cross section of students to avoid targeting - Visits are applied universally to all students and their families with the expressed intent of building relationships.
- Discussions include hopes, dreams and expectations - Again, the focus is on building authentic relationships of trust. Sharing hopes and dreams lays the groundwork for a productive partnership focused on the common goal, the success of the student.