New Jersey’s Statewide Parent Advocacy Network has received $999,389 from the Statewide Family Engagement Centers, which provides financial support to statewide organizations to carry out parent education and family engagement programs.

The grant is part of the $11.4 million recently awarded to 12 organizations in states and school districts across the country. The funds will improve and strengthen family engagement programs, according to a news release.

This investment builds on the United States Department of Education’s “Raising the Bar for Parent Partnership in Our Schools efforts to engage parents, family members, caregivers and advocates. To date, the program has awarded nearly $83 million to expand and support parent and family engagement.

“As a parent, teacher, and former principal, I’ve seen firsthand how strong and productive relationships between educators and families are the foundation of thriving school communities,” said U.S. Secretary of Education Miguel Cardona. “The importance of parent partnerships in our schools is backed by years of research demonstrating how students benefit academically, socially, and emotionally from robust family engagement.” 

Services offered through SFEC are designed to assist parents in participating in their children’s education, including by giving parents more confidence and empowering them to engage with teachers and school leaders. The SFEC program, housed within the USDOE’s Office of Elementary and Secondary Education, has supported funding efforts to: 

  • Provide direct services to families on how to effectively work with their child’s school and teachers to improve their child’s academic outcomes and overall well-being.
  • Serve as critical centralized information hubs during and after the pandemic.
  • Launch strategic surveys and publish key research findings to inform educators, practitioners and families about the latest educational barriers and opportunities.
  • Provide parents and caregivers with easy-to-understand, applicable information to solve present-day problems.

You can also view the USDOE’s publication of sample questions for parents and families to help build strong partnerships with schools here

View the full news release to learn more and to find out about the other states and groups that received awards under the most recent funding.