These efforts are fostering more inclusive decision-making, improving school practices and policies, and building a multi-stakeholder movement to close the achievement gap.
The James Irvine Foundation launched the Families Improving Education (FIE) initiative in 2008 by funding eleven community-based organizations in California’s Central Valley and Inland Empire to support parent involvement in K-12 educational policymaking. Families In Schools, a Los Angeles-based advocacy organization was selected to serve as a technical assistance provider and grant-making intermediary.
The FIE initiative is based on the premise that parent-engagement efforts can foster more responsive and appropriate school policies that enhance student success. This report, prepared by Harder+Company Community Research, highlights the insights and promising strategies of the FIE initiative, looking closely at three core components: increasing the involvement of parents in K-12 decision-making; influencing educational decisions, policies, and practices that lead to improved academic outcomes; and strengthening the capacity of community-based organizations to engage in educational advocacy.