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Parent and Family Engagement Policy

J. T. Barber Elementary School                                                                                

2017-2018 Title I Parent and Family Engagement Policy

The policy is reviewed and discussed annually by the J.T. Barber Cabinet and is given to parents and families annually. The Title One Parent and Family Engagement Policy was reviewed at the Title One Spring Annual Meeting in May 2017.

Forward:J. T. Barber Elementary School believes that the education of children should be a continuous collaboration among the home, school and community. The JTB Title I School-Wide Program along with parents and families shall jointly develop a written policy to be distributed to all parents and families at the beginning of the school year. The policy is included in the student calendar and is part of the student's intake package. Each student is given a copy of the calendar at the time of enrollment, whether it is the first day or during the school year. Thereafter, review of the policy occurs annually. Each year, approval of the Title I Parent and Family Engagement Policy will be voted on at the Title I Annual Spring Meeting.

Annual Public Meetings
Parents and Families are informed and invited to attend the scheduled Fall and Spring Annual Title I meetings using flyers, Facebook, school newsletters, notices on weekly reports and the school's alert now system. The annual Fall Title I meeting is scheduled for September. This meeting will provide parents and families with information about the current Title I School-Wide Program here at JTB. Data from the 2017 End-of-Grade Assessments (EOG) is shared with parents and families to inform them of the academic progress made by all JTB students.  In May, the annual Spring Title I meeting will provide parents the opportunity to review the parent and family engagement policy and share their concerns and suggestions for improvements for the upcoming school year. This meeting also solicits from parents and families an evaluation of the current school year's program and a review of the test data that was shared in the fall is revisited as well as state proficiency levels for the upcoming school year.

Flexible Meetings
Offering a flexible number of meetings at various times of the day is a standard consideration at JTB. Parent and family meetings or conferences will be held throughout the school year, as well as various times of the day or week, to provide continued information, support and resources for parents and families. Parents and families are encouraged and welcomed to volunteer and attend all school activities.

Engaging Parents and Families
Parents and Families serve on key organizations at J.T. Barber and the Title One Parent and Family Advisory Board and the J.T. Barber Cabinet have parent representation. The J. T. Barber Cabinet has reviewed and revised the Parental and Family Engagement Plan and the Title I School-Wide Program. Parents and Families are invited to attend all school-wide Title One activities.

Timely Information
Parent and Family workshops for grades K-5 will be held throughout the year to inform parents and families about the various programs and curriculum used at JTB. Parents and families are informed about student academic goals and measures according to state and local standards. A follow-up is conducted with all parents and families in September, at the Title I Fall Annual Meeting.

Information is shared with J.T. Barber parents and families in a timely manner using: flyers, the principal’s monthly school newsletter, notices on weekly reports, and the Alert Now messaging system. All parents and families are informed and invited to attend all scheduled meetings, especially the annual fall and spring Title I meetings.  Each teacher or administrator schedules parent and family student conferences whenever deemed necessary by the school or when requested by the parent and family.  These conferences may be held before, during or after school hours.

Parent and Family Comments
At each general meeting a plus/delta evaluation is conducted in order that improvements may be made. Parents and families are also given surveys to complete. In our school, comment/suggestion box in the main office so students, parents and families may provide input on a continuing basis about any matter concerning our school. An open door policy prevails at JTB. Parents and families are always welcome to share suggestions/comments.

Parent Compacts
The Student/Parent and Family /Teacher Compact is a federally mandated agreement between the home and school. The agreement defines goals, expectations and shared responsibilities of JTB, parents and families as equal partners for student success. Parents and families sign the compact and return it to the school. A copy of the signed compact is returned to the parents and families. The teacher keeps a copy of the signed compact on file in the classroom and uses it when necessary during parent and family conferences to remind students as well as parents and families of their commitment to the expectations for success. At the end of the school year, the compacts are forwarded to the principal's office and are archived as part of the school official records. JTB experienced a 99% return rate for the 2016-2017 academic year! We exceeded the districts expected 95% return rate!

Parent and Family Assistance
State and local expectations are shared with parents at the Parent and Family Information Workshops for grades K - 5, in September. EOG results are shared with parents and families at the Fall Title I Annual Meeting. Results are posted on the information board near the office as well as shared on the school's website. All grade levels send home weekly progress updates, interim progress reports, and special letters to frequently inform parents and families about their child's academic progress in the weekly communication folder.  The school's Parent and Families Center is located within the media center, providing full access for our parents and families, students, and staff. Academic materials are available for parents and families to check out for use at home with their children.

Coordinating and Integrating

The New Bern Rotary Club supports us with thirty pairs of tennis shoes for needy children. The Greenbrier Community, Alpha Kappa Alpha, Delta Sigma Theta, and Zeta Phi Beta Sororities, area churches, doctor offices, Armstrong Grocery, and other businesses support school.

The Coastal Community Action Head Start program coordinates its transition for upcoming Kindergarten students by sharing some classroom time and eating lunch with JTB Kindergarten students. Registration information is sent to our Head Start parents and families following their site visits.  JTB prides itself on partnering with various school and community agencies which assist in the promotion of the educational growth of each child. Frequent communication occurs among the Craven County Health and Social Services Departments, RHA, Craven County Schools' Social Workers, and JTB staff. In addition, other school and community organizations such as churches, sororities, fraternities, and local businesses support us and volunteer to work in our schools as mentors, tutors, etc. Monetary donations are also given by these same groups to assist us in providing basic needs and services to our parents and families.

Every student will receive a green JTB Weekly Communication Folder.  Parents and families can expect all materials to go home weekly in this folder.  Tuesday is the dedicated communication folder day. The principal’s parent letter is sent home the first Tuesday of each month and teacher communication is shared each week in the Tuesday Communication Folder.  Communications, when possible, are sent home in the language the parents/guardians can understand. Interfaith Refugee Ministry provides interpreters at the home level for our non-English speaking families. Our ELL tutors and a computerized program have been used to translate materials as appropriate. Interfaith Refugee Ministry has provided assistance in the area of communicating information to our parents.

Opportunities for LEP and SWD Parents and Families
Parents and families of children with disabilities will be afforded opportunities to participate fully and freely in all education activities at school. A special effort is made to include parents and families of LEP and disabled students. When possible, flyers inviting parents and families to our school for various activities on campus are sent home in the native language. Bilingual community helpers, parents, ESL instructors, and even students are assigned as liaisons and interpreters between the home and school.  JTB is handicapped accessible and staff is available to assist with all disabilities upon request.