While parents make sure their children go to school, do the required work and attend every day, too many are finding their voice is unheard in discussions about how schools can best serve their students.
Let’s listen to what parents want from schools. A recent Harris Poll of more than 5,000 parents¹ found education ranks high among their concerns — and that 82% would vote for someone outside their party if the candidate’s education agenda matched their own. It’s clear that the pandemic substantially shifted parents’ views on education, making them more assertive about their own decision-making power in their children’s schooling.
Another recent California parent poll shows:
- 92% say it’s important to ensure students advance from grade to grade based on their competency in the subject matter, rather than how much time they sit in a classroom.
- 86% say that it is important to help address societal inequalities by keeping kids connected to food, counseling and technology such as laptops and Wi-Fi, especially in rural areas and for students of color.
- 86% say that it is important to treat the behaviors associated with trauma-induced stress and grief as opportunities to teach life skills, not as discipline cases.
- 89% say it is important to structure schools to serve individual students and understand that not all students learn in the same way. Learn4Life, a network of 80+ free public charter high schools, has seen a growing demand by parents for schools that offer individualized instruction, flexibility and job training skills.
“Our proven model is ideal for the students who don’t thrive in a traditional classroom,” said Lindsay Reese, area superintendent for Learn4Life. “Elected officials and educators need to recognize and support the role parents play in the education of their children, and the changes they want to improve student outcomes.”