We Loaded the Children On the Bus–Where Are the Parents?

What has happened to our education system? Since the creation and establishment of the Elementary Secondary Education Act (ESEA) of 1965, education reform promulgated the fact that our children were lacking the necessary skills to meet the demands of the work place. Figuratively speaking, this was our opportunity to load the children on the bus with their parents, properly assess their needs, provide every child equal access to education, adhere to high standards, adopt methods to acquire accountability, and purse parent engagement. In 2001, the reauthorization of ESEA became the No Child Left Behind Act. Through reauthorization, greater expectations were required in order that accountability, flexibility in funding, research-based practices, parent involvement, and parent options, refine the process of closing the student achievement gap. Educators guide children down the road of continuous improvement, but where are the parents?

The Title I parent involvement policy opens the door to involving parents in the education of their child. If not connected with the educational system, one could read and interpret the parent involvement policy as an “invitation” for parents; it is like opening the doors to the school so all stakeholders can join in the success of the children. To the point of sounding ludicrous, have educators intentionally ignored the one group of individuals who have the greatest influence over our nation’s children? Read the policy brief to gain a since of the opportunities parent/guardians have been missing for years.

Now that you have read the policy brief, why are district officials and school administrators making it difficult for parents to become involved in their child’s education? When parents arrive at the school, they receive less than a smile. Why do school office employees exude the attitude, “don’t bother me?” Other than making cupcakes, being room mothers/dads, or making copies, how often do parents receive information concerning how they can assist teachers and students on campus? Parents can assist as math tutors, as reading volunteers, or serve as assistant liaisons who call other parents to attend teacher workshops and planning meetings for school improvement?

In today’s world, people have become vocal in the areas of employment, finance, taxes, etc. When will the American people become vocal advocates for the education of its children? Better yet, when will educators become proactive and gain the trust of parents by inviting them into the education arena? If we empower our parents by offering the necessary tools and trainings for them to become active partners in their child’s education, we emancipate them to establish a community of forward thinking individuals who value education.

The children have been loaded on the bus and there are no questions concerning the whereabouts of the parents.