Engaging african american parents in the schools: A community-based consultation model

  • Koonce D
  • Harper W
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Although it has been well established that parental involvement in school is linked to positive outcomes for children, there are a myriad of issues that make it challenging for some African American families to engage school personnel in collaborative problem solving (e.g., Hill & Craft, 2003). Some of the barriers that decrease involvement include parents' poor school experiences, intimidation by school personnel, and inconvenient meeting times. When parents' initial advocacy efforts are not effective, we must seek alternative methods. A recommended method is the collaborative efforts of community-based social service agencies and school consultants to engage African American families in mutually beneficial partnerships with schools to facilitate successful academic careers for their children (Witty, 1982). In this article, we discuss the barriers that African American families face when attempting to collaborate with schools and describe a multiphase model for engaging African American families with school to effectively advocate for their children's needs. A case study is presented describing the use of this model with a student exhibiting behavior problems in school.

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  • Danel A. Koonce

  • Walter Harper

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