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"Parents Building Communities in Schools" from Annenberg Voices in Urban Education

by Joanna Brown, Lead Education Organizer at LSNA

This article was originally published in Skills for Smart Systems, VUE 17, Fall 2007

An effort to engage parents in Chicago schools results in benefits to both the schools and the parents.

On any given day, in nine public schools in Chicago’s Logan Square community, about 170 parent mentors and parent tutors are in elementary school classrooms tutoring children; every evening two or three teams of parents and teachers make Literacy Ambassador home visits; about eighty mentors and several hundred other parents are attending school-based community centers to learn English or learn skills, while another sixty parents are in college classes to become bilingual teachers.

Most of these parents are immigrant mothers or the daughters of immigrants. Their schools are part of a network of schools serving low-income, largely Latino children, brought together by the Logan Square Neighborhood Association (LSNA) to create schools as centers of community – and serve the needs of the immigrant students.

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