I am excited to share a free new parent resource with you! As a fellow PTA parent, I know that we are – by definition – engaged in our children’s education; focused on their success, but also concerned about making our schools the best they can be for our whole community. That is one reason that I am grateful for the Common Core State Standards that teachers are now using to prepare our kids for college. But the new, better tests that measure against those standards aren’t coming to most of us for another year or two, and I need to know if my son is on track NOW.
Talking to a lot of parents, I have come to realize that many of us do not have great information on our children’s educational progress and need a little help to support them in school. Because I also work in education, I have had the chance to join with others in creating a new community by parents and for parents, with online tools to help us out. We have built an “educational check up” at www.raisethebarparents.org for kids in grades 3-6 (more grades to come next year) that also offers follow up resources. The check ups are brief (about 18 questions each) reading and math quizzes aligned to Common Core State Standards, as well as a Learning Habits Growth Card to help get a sense of your child’s character strengths, since those matter a lot too.
Our time is scarce, but spending less than 30 minutes giving my son his math educational check up was really worthwhile. I learned that my son really hadn’t grasped fractions- and then the website gave me free, online resources he could use to help build that skill.
Now we want to share this with other parents, so you can get a Common Core aligned educational check up for your kids too! This is just a pilot site, so we also want your feedback and ideas on how to improve it. If you have a child in third, fourth, fifth or sixth grade, will you take 30 minutes tonight to come to www.raisethebarparents.org and give your child an educational check up? Together we can help our children succeed!
Bethany Little is a Managing Partner with America Achieves, a nonprofit organization focused on preparing all young people for success in a changing world, including through its Raise the Bar parent community. Prior to joining America Achieves, Bethany was the Chief Education Counsel in the U.S. Senate and has worked in the White House, the U.S. Department of Education, the Children’s Defense Fund and the Alliance for Excellent Education. She is also mom to two sons who attend public school in Washington DC.