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The Harvard Family Research Project separated from the Harvard Graduate School of Education to become the Global Family Research Project as of January 1, 2017. It is no longer affiliated with Harvard University.

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Dear FINE Member,

Here are this month's FINE member updates. Please feel free to forward this information to friends and other education colleagues.

New on the FINE Website

  • Family Involvement Storybook Corner

    In case you missed our announcement last month, we have launched a new section of our website for promoting family involvement.

    The Family Involvement Storybook Corner is a unique source for information on using children's storybooks with family involvement themes to engage families in their children's education and encourage family–school–community partnerships, all while supporting literacy. Launched in partnership with Reading Is Fundamental, the Storybook Corner offers resources to help educators, families, and those who work with families promote family involvement in children's education in a wide range of settings. Resources include a bibliography of storybooks with family involvement themes for ages 4–8, as well as teacher, trainer, and parent tools for using a multicultural storybook to promote involvement.

New From Harvard Family Research Project

  • HFRP's Complementary Learning Concept

    HFRP is introducing our new concept to address the achievement gap—complementary learning. We believe that for all children to be successful, there must be an array of linked learning supports around them that reach beyond the school. We call this network of supports complementary learning. In the complementary learning model, family involvement is a key mechanism for linking families, early childhood programs, schools, and other learning supports for children. The new complementary learning section of our website explores the concept further and provides links to our relevant publications and resources.

    Early this year, we plan to launch a new series of publications on complementary learning. To be notified when these new publications are available, sign up for our e-news email.

  • New Issue of The Evaluation Exchange on Democratic Evaluation

    Equity and inclusion in the evaluations of programs for children, families, and communities are at the forefront of the discussion in the latest issue of our The Evaluation Exchange periodical. The issue also examines the use of evaluation to promote public accountability and transparency and focuses on including parents and community members in evaluating programs for children and families.

    If you would like to receive multiple hard copies for a conference or training workshop, please send a request to and let us know how you plan to use them.

FINE Resource Roundup: Advocacy and Engagement

Since the resources on the FINE website are so extensive, we thought we would occasionally bring your attention to resources you may not have seen before or that may now be more relevant to you in your work. This month's roundup complements the new issue of The Evaluation Exchange on democratic evaluation in education and social programs for children, families, and communities. This month we highlight FINE resources that focus on leadership, advocacy, and community organizing.

  • Research Report: Concepts and Models of Family Involvement

    This report identifies four approaches to family involvement—parenting practices, school–family partnerships, democratic participation, and school choice—and illustrates their implementation through case studies. The case studies on democratic participation highlight the Right Question Project, National Coalition of Advocates for Students, and the Prichard Committee for Academic Excellence.

  • Research Digest: Reading, Writing, and Reform in the Bronx: Lessons for Community Engagement in Schools

    Five community-based education organizing groups use various strategies to build trust and commitment among parents and teachers.

  • Research Digest: “As Long as I Got Breath, I'll Fight”: Participatory Action Research for Educational Justice

    A participatory action project in the South Bronx explores how young people, their parents, and community members have mobilized for educational resources, opportunities, and the fulfillment of their dreams.

  • Research Digest: Faith-Based Organizing for School Improvement in the Texas Borderlands: A Case Study of the Alliance School Initiative

    Educators, parents, and a faith-based institution strive to create a viable parental engagement initiative at a public elementary and middle school in the Texas borderlands.

  • FINE Forum e-Newsletter Program Spotlight on Parent Services Project

    Parent Services Project in California illustrates how a community-based organization can serve as a catalyst of social capital by bringing together families and school personnel and by facilitating their dialogue and goal setting.

  • FINE Forum e-Newsletter Program Spotlight on Preparing Teachers for Urban Schools

    Dennis Shirley, Professor and Chair of Teacher Education at Boston College, designs and teaches his urban education courses in collaboration with urban teachers and holds classes in urban public school sites. A community organizing effort to bring more families into the school for Parents' Night is a central project in one course.

  • FINE Forum e-Newsletter Parent Perspective on Leadership Training

    Kentucky parents have initiated projects to support schools in the implementation of state standards in mathematics.

  • FINE Forum e-Newsletter on Jane Addams School for Democracy

    The Jane Addams School for Democracy is a university–community partnership to create an education and action center where community members, high school and college students, and faculty address community problems and public issues.

  • FINE Forum e-Newsletter Parent Perspective on Parent Voices

    Parent Voices, an organizing group in California, mobilizes parents around high quality and accessible child care for all families.

  • Member Insight: How can early childhood settings encourage parents to advocate for their child?

    This Member Insight by six early childhood education experts explains how early childhood settings can encourage parents to advocate for their children.

  • Member Insight: How can parents be engaged in students' transition from middle to high school?

    Eugenia Ambrocio discusses ways to empower Latino parents to advocate for their children in schools and become more involved in the transition from middle school to high school.

  • Syllabus: People, Power, and Change

    Marshall Ganz, Lecturer in Public Policy at the Harvard University Kennedy School of Government, teaches a course on organizing. Students learn to engage with social, economic, and political problems from an organizer's perspective by developing their own organizing projects.

  • Syllabus: Education Organizing

    Mark R. Warren, Associate Professor at Harvard Graduate School of Education, teaches a course on the role of community organizing in fostering school change. The course examines the many ways that community groups and schools promote the active engagement of participants to improve education.

  • Syllabus: Social Contexts of Education

    Dennis Shirley, Professor and Chair of the Teacher Education Program at the Lynch School of Education at Boston College, team-teaches his course with Boston public school teachers in an urban school setting. Themes of the course include school–family–community partnerships and community organizing for school reform.

  • Commentary on the Teaching Case: Making a Decision About College: Should I Stay or Should I Go?

    Concha Delgado-Gaitan describes the importance of creating empowered parent organizations to transform schools and to prepare parents for their children's transition to college.

Reports and Articles


  • A City Platform for Strengthening Families and Improving Outcomes for Children and Youth

    This platform from the National League of Cities, presented to delegates at the 82nd Annual Congress of Cities on December 10th, challenges leaders across America to take action to support families. Recommendations include establishing family–school–community partnerships, helping parents find preschools, supporting family literacy, and encouraging family involvement in school.

Upcoming Events

  • Child Welfare League of America 2006 National Conference

    The Child Welfare League of America's national conference, Children 2006: Securing Brighter Futures, will take place in Washington, D.C., February 26–March 1. Topics include family–school–community connections, the Families and Schools Together program, and family-centered community organizing.

  • 2006 National Smart Start Conference

    The National Smart Start Conference in Greensboro, North Carolina, March 6–9, aims to address an audience of representatives from early childhood-related organizations and the government and child care professionals. Topics will include family support, family–school–community partnerships, and parent involvement.

  • Community–Campus Partnerships for Health 9th Conference

    The 9th conference by Community–Campus Partnerships for Health (CCPH), taking place in Minneapolis, Minnesota, May 31–June 3, will focus on Walking the Talk: Achieving the Promise of Authentic Partnerships. CCPH works to connect communities and institutions of higher education in order to achieve goals such as closing the K–12 achievement gap, encouraging youth civic engagement, and opening pathways to college.

Contact Us

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FINE – The Family Involvement Network of Educators

© 2016 Presidents and Fellows of Harvard College
Published by Harvard Family Research Project