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Equitable Parent-School Collaboration Research Project
The Equitable Parent-School Collaboration Research Project at the University of Washington (EPSC-UW) seeks to contribute to a collective effort to promote equitable educational outcomes for under-served students, families and communities, particularly in South Seattle/South King County. The project currently focuses on the Road Map Project, a regional collaborative initiative aimed at dramatically improving student achievement from “cradle to college and career.” In 2012-2013, the Road Map region served 120,890 students, of which 59% were low income, 67% were students of color, and 16% were English Language Learners. Parent and family engagement is a key strategy for reaching the goal of doubling the number of students on track to graduation or a career credential by 2020 (www.roadmapproject.org).
In partnership with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Community Center for Education Results (CCER), and regional districts and organizations, the UW Equitable Parent-School Collaboration Research Project seeks to understand and support district and community-based parent engagement efforts and their use of indicators to build more equitable parent engagement with schools and communities in the 7-district Road Map region. The research includes two components: case studies (and design work) and indicators work.
We conducted an in-depth comparative case study to support, document, and learn from the implementation of two school district and two place-based initiatives focused on building parent-school-community collaborations to improve student learning and academic outcomes. Through these case studies, we are gaining a systematic understanding of what promotes and inhibits equitable and authentic parent/family engagement at a systems level within the context of the Road Map collective impact initiative.
The indicators component of the Equitable Parent-School Collaboration Research Project entails the collaborative development of common parent engagement indicators. The development of common parent engagement indicators supports the Road Map Project’s emphasis on the aligned use of data to encourage strategic action and drive improvement.
Our subsequent design work with Kent School District and Neighborhood House seeks to co-develop "next" practices in building more equitable collaboration between parents, families, communities and schools.
 Districts in the Road Map region include Auburn School District, Federal Public Schools, Highline Public Schools, Kent School District, Renton School District, Seattle Public Schools (South Seattle schools only), and Tukwila School District.