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Standard 1 - Welcoming All Families

Welcoming All Families into the School Community

Families are active participants in the life of the school, and feel welcomed, valued, and connected to each other, to school staff, and to what students are learning and doing in class.

Because schools are all about relationships, the first of the National Standards for Family-School Partnerships is about creating a welcoming school community. Interactions among teachers, students, parents and others set the tone for everything else. Parents tell us that being greeted warmly and treated with respect is the number one reason behind their school involvement.


There are two main goals for Standard 1

Create a welcoming climate:
When families walk into the school building they should feel they belong.

  • Can families develop personal relationships with teachers and staff?
  • Is the atmosphere family-friendly for everyone?
  • Are there many ways to volunteer even for parents who may be working two jobs or who don’t speak English or have a car?

Build a respectful, inclusive school community: 
School policies and programs should reflect and respect the diversity of the families in the community.

  • Does the school staff work with families to identify and address barriers to involvement (such as differences of race, education, and culture)?
  • Are events open to the whole family and offered at convenient times and places?

Access the resources below to see how one school created a welcoming atmosphere and what you or your organization can do to get started.



Success Story: Fishkill Elementary
How one New York elementary school created a welcoming atmosphere



Action Steps
Ways for parents and leaders to create a welcoming atmosphere at the school.


Additional Resources

Standard 1 Resources
Word document listing additional resources