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COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT

Look Out Harry Potter! -- Book Banning Heats Up
J. K. Rowlings best-selling Harry Potter childrens book series topped the most frequently banned books last year. The sorcerer may head up the list again, for the second year in a row, if the shift in censorship cases continues to focus on books about fantasy. This week, National Library Week, Education World examines the issue of book banning. Included: Resources for establishing procedures in your school system to handle challenges to popular books.

FROM THE P-FILES: Principals Share Parent Involvement Ideas
This month, Education World asked a number of principals to tell us about ways their teachers involve parents in the classroom and the school. Dozens of ideas flooded our e-mailbox! Here we share some of those great ideas! Included: More than 30 practical ideas for including parents across the grades!

Middle School Helps Parents With Resource Center
Part of a national partnership program to encourage parent and community involvement in schools, a parent resource center in a Connecticut middle school helps parents understand their middle-school-age youngsters. Included: Tips for starting a parent center in your school!

Celebrate American Education Week by Building a Village
November 14-20 is American Education Week. Celebrate the event and strengthen the bonds between your schools and your community with activities suggested by the National Education Association. Included: Tips for recognizing school staff and involving parents and businesses during American Education Week!

Newsletter Connects Middle-School Parents and Schools
Every Minneapolis parent with kids in fifth grade to eighth grade receives *Middle School Connection* at home. This six-times-a-year newsletter provides information and tools to help parents navigate the web of school choices and become advocates for their kids. Written by parents *for* parents, the newsletter is widely accepted by school administrators. Included: Advice for school administrators ---from parents--- on communicating with parents!

Student-Led Conferences: A Growing Trend
For years parent-teacher conferences have been the primary means of school-home communication. But now, many schools are trying something new --- student-led conferences that communicate not only how a student's doing but also why.

Citizens Speak Out on Public Education
What do people think about our nation's public education? Some of the answers from two polls and a report may surprise you.

Bring Your Fathers to School!
Just in time for Father's Day! A recent study reveals that a father's participation in in-school activities and events can have a significant impact on his children's educational success. Read about the implications of that study and learn some things you can do to make every day Fathers' Day at your school.

Familiar Ground: Traditions That Build School Community
An inspiring new book from the Northeast Foundation for Children describes how a school staff uses traditions to weave a school of individual students, staff, and families into one community.

"Family Involvement in Children's Education"
Strategies used by 20 local Title I programs to overcome barriers to parent involvement are featured in an idea book recently added to the U.S. Department of Education's Web site. Here we explore in-depth one of those programs.

"New Skills for New Schools: Preparing Teachers in Family Involvement"
A new report looks at promising methods in preparing teachers to understand the family's role in a child's education and to effectively involve the family.

The Social Context of Education -- 1997
A wide range of social conditions can affect the way kids learn. A report, The Social Context of Education, examines those conditions and how they've changed over the last few decades.

Coming Up: Two Teleconferences From the DOE
Two teleconferences are coming up: one on "preparing teachers to involve families" and one on "supporting quality teachers."

Debate in the News: Should PTAs Be Allowed to Fund Teacher Salaries?
The floodgates of a longstanding debate were reopened recently when a group of New York City parents raised $46,000 to pay the salary of a laid off teacher.

Community Learning Centers: Keeping School Open After School Lets Out
A new guidebook, available on the Internet, can help school leaders in establishing programs that keep kids off the street and benefit all members of a community.

America Goes Back to School!
The America Goes Back to School initiative draws attention to the critical need for parents and communities to support their schools. Take a look at a few of the special AGBTS activities planned across the U.S. this fall!

Room Mothers and a Whole Lot More
Involving Parents as Partners in Education