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Viewpoint: Making NAAPID a success

Christine Osorio

Christine Osorio is the District 622 superintendent

Research shows that students achieve greater academic success when parents feel connected with their child's school. In 1996, National African American Parent Involvement Day (NAAPID) was started as a call for school communities to strengthen connections with African American families.

During the week of Feb. 12, over a dozen elementary and secondary sites across District 622 hosted NAAPID events for all parents. Some schools held activities during the school day while others offered evening events. This was the third year our district has participated in NAAPID events.

Parents were invited into our schools to engage in cross-cultural interactions directly aligned with our strategic plan and learner profiles. Building principals collaborated with equity liaisons and leadership teams to plan events for families.

For events held during the school day, parents were encouraged to take part in student learning and engage in dialogues with principals and staff. Parents enjoyed grade-level events, including: reading, educational games, classroom visits, music programs, student presentations, presentations about post-secondary option during high school, and information about how to become more involved in the school. Many parents also enjoyed lunch and recess with students.

A total of 622 NAAPID events held after school hours yielded hundreds of attendees. At Cowern Elementary, 300 guests enjoyed an evening of dinner and a choreographed drumming presentation. The music was engaging and reiterated the importance of never giving up, taking chances, and standing up for yourself.

Without a doubt, NAAPID proved to be a great way for families to enjoy spending time with their learners at school while building comraderies with other parents. Thank you to everyone who participated in NAAPID 2018. Your involvement made these events a success!

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