Getting Parents Involved
Parental involvement is widely touted as an important determinant of students’ educational success. However, it can be more challenging for socioeconomically disadvantaged parents to support their children’s schooling for linguistic, financial, logistic (long distances from school), or informational (not understanding the way the school functions) reasons. Reduced support from parents may in turn affect the educational success of their children.
If disadvantaged parents are unaware of the school’s structure or unsure of how to support and monitor their children with homework and schooling decisions, then parental involvement programs could improve students’ educational success. Yet, little is known about what schools can do to encourage parents—particularly those from lower socioeconomic backgrounds—to participate more in their children’s education at home and in school. One proposed policy has been to use parent-school meetings to encourage parents to engage in their children’s education.
Researchers Francesco Avvisati (OECD), J-PAL affiliate Marc Gurgand (Paris School of Economics), Nina Guyon (Department of Economics, National University of Singapore), and J-PAL affiliate Eric Maurin (Paris School of Economics) conducted a randomized evaluation to measure the impact of a parent-school meeting program on parents’ involvement and their children’s behavior. Can increased parental involvement help improve students’ behavior and educational outcomes?