According to Richard V. Reeves and Kimberly Howard in a recent report for the Center on Children and Families at Brooking entitled The Parenting Gap, "public policy to address the parenting gap falls into one of two broad camps: building the skills of parents, or providing services to supplement their efforts. The first set seeks to make parents better; the latter to make them less relevant."
The Center suggests that the focus on parents and families needs to be broader, more multifaceted, and embedded into a unified and comprehensive system of learning supports designed to address barriers to learning and teaching. In this context, interventions to enhance home involvement and engagement must1. focus on all who play significant care taking roles with a school's students (including parent surrogates and older siblings; the foster care system)
2. address factors interfering with school learning and performance directly outreach to those who are reluctant to engage with the school, especially if they have a child who is not doing well make a continuous effort to re-engage those who have become disconnected.
Moreover, our experience is that for this to play out well at a school requires ensuring that a learning supports component is fully integrated into school improvement policy and practice.
For resources related to this broader perspective on home involvement, see· Enhancing Home Involvement to Address Barriers to Learning: A Collaborative Process
· Engaging the strengths of Families, Youth, and Communities in Rebuilding Learning Supports
· Engaging and Re-engaging Families When a Student is Not Doing Well
· Home Involvement in Schooling: A Self-Study Survey (Tools for Practice)