An exploration of family-school partnerships at a university-model school
The purpose of this exploratory case study was to investigate the perceptions and experiences of teachers and parents concerning a high-involvement model of parental engagement known as the University-Model School (UMS). The Dual-Capacity Building Framework for Family-School Partnerships was the theoretical lens that shaped the study. Within the framework, a microstructure of four categories exists that explains more in-depth the supports desirable for the development and sustainability of family-school partnerships. Participants were parents and teachers, representative of grades K-12, from a member school belonging to the National Association of University-Model Schools. Data collected from study participants indicated that UMS parents and teachers face similar challenges for developing and sustaining family-school partnerships as other private and public school models. The family structure and socioeconomic status of the stakeholders of the case study school limit the transferability of the study findings to other settings. However, participants' perspectives and experiences indicated that the model holds important implications for educators seeking to enhance the development of family-school partnerships. Study participants perceived that mentoring programs, school leadership, high levels of parental engagement, and faculty availability were strengths of the school that contributed to a strong sense of community and collaboration. Overall, participants believed the model afforded positive student outcomes in academics and character development. Additionally, participants believed the model strengthened the family unit. In this study, UMS stakeholders' common philosophy, shared faith, similar family structure and socioeconomic background, and flexible schedule added to their capacity to build and sustain a collaborative partnership.
Thesis (Ed.D.)-- Wichita State University, College of Education, Dept. of Counseling, Educational Leadership, Education and School Psychology