Program connects parents to their children’s education

Program connects parents to their children’s education

Technology For All, a 501(c)3 nonprofit, is partnering with schools in the Houston area to launch a program that encourages student success through parental engagement. Technology For All (TFA) will teach students and their parents how to use online tools which give immediate feedback on student grades and attendance and which allow the parents to communicate with their children’s teachers.  Many local school districts provide these tools, but they are under-utilized.

In the Houston Independent School District (HISD), the tool is called Parent-Student Connect.  It allows students and parents to monitor grades of homework, tests and overall GPA in a class, and to be alerted when those grades drop below or rise above a specified point. Additionally, the program keeps track of absences and sends notification to parents when a student is marked absent. Parents can also use the Parent-Student Connect tool to send direct messages to teachers when problems arise, and get other information about a student’s grades and attendance record.

TFA’s first training session took place at Houston’s Milby High School on July 23. The class taught incoming freshmen how to navigate the Parent-Student Connect site.  Forty-three new users were registered during the training session. Prior to this class, the total number of users was 86, so enrollment was increased by 50% after only the first session.

Future classes will bring more Milby High students along with their parents into the Parent-Student Connect program, and will focus on making adults aware of the impact they can have on their child’s education through use of the program. Technology For All’s classes will allow participants to register as users and provide the instructions they need to use the Parent-Student Connect tool and other school system resources.

Technology For All is looking to expand the program to other schools within HISD and to other school districts that use tools similar to Parent-Student Connect. For more information on the training, contact Eddie Hilliard at 713.454.6436.