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Policy

The Agency will provide family activity events as a means of involving parents in on-site decision making, resource sharing, parent education,curriculum planning, and to provide two-way communication between staff and parents. Sites with dual language learners (DLL) will have interpretation and materials available in home language whenever possible.

Benchmark

Families in both full and part year programs will be invited to participate in family activity events, all of which will provide parent education opportunities. These events will be organized regionally and will include an open house, family activity events and an end of the year event.

Procedure

  1. Family activity events will be at a time when it is most convenient for the majority of families to attend. Input on convenient times will be solicited at the beginning of the year. If participation declines, the time may be changed to accommodate the current needs of the parent population.
  2. Staff will need to adjust their work schedules to attend evening meetings; at a minimum, one teacher from each site will attend along with the Family Support Coordinator (FSC). Regional managers, consultants, specialists and interpreters may also be attending to provide support, resources training, and monitoring.
  3. All families will receive notification of the time, date and location of the family activity events at least seven days in advance.
  4. Parents in the Community Child Care programs will be included as participants in the center based meetings whenever possible. If this isn’t feasible, the Community Child Care Specialist (CCCS) will conduct separate family activity events in the community where the program is based.
  5. At the site level, family activity events will provide opportunities for parent education as follows:
    1. Orientation – at the time of enrollment
    2. Open House – October
    3. Winter Family Event – January
    4. End of Year Event – May/June
  6. FSC will ensure that family activity event information will be kept in a notebook on site and will include
    1. Family Activity Planning form
    2. Attendance sheets
    3. Copy of handouts given to parents from meetings as well as others sent to families
    4. Policy Council minutes and copies of Action items for each meeting distributed by Executive Administrative Assistant
    5. Copies of site newsletters
  7. Family Information notebooks are stored on site where all parents and staff can access it. (see Site Classroom Newsletters policy)
  8. Family activity event agenda options may include these topics and other suggestions made by the site parent group for future events.
    1. Policy Council Information Representative will have time to share information from Policy Council
    2. Parent education topic
    3. Classroom update and curriculum suggestions / volunteer sign up
    4. Family service information / resources / community information
    5. Fund-raising report (optional/facilitated by fund-raising committee) (see Sub-Committees and Description of Standing Committees and Fundraising guidelines. Also see Fundraising Project Approval form)
    6. Family literacy activities and information to support parents as first teachers.
  9. When CACFP standards are met, determined by the Food Service Manager and Family & Community Engagement Consultant staff will be designated to collect appropriate documentation (meal count, attendance sheets) and turn these in to the Food Service Manager. See Nutrition-Food Services at Events policy for meal details.

This policy complies with Head Start Performance Standard 45CFR Section 1304.40. 1304.51(c) (1), (2)
Policy Council approved it on September 9, 1997. August 12, 2014
Board of Directors approved on November 17, 2009
Updated July 2, 1999. June 26, 2002. May 30,2003. June 2008. May 2009. August 2012. July 2013. August 2013. August 2014. July 2016. May 2018
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