Any teacher will tell you that technology has changed all facets of education, including how we communicate with parents. But, what are the best modes of communication when bridging the home and school connection. Research, including that of John Hattie, will show that students perform better academically when there is a strong parent involvement.
Current research by Harvard University found that text messaging between teachers and parents did connect with improved student achievement when the content of the texts was focused on instructional goals, rather than management or behaviors.
It was also noted in these studies that the tool of choice for parents is the SmartPhone. The percent of parents owning such a device has increased greatly over time with the % of parents owning such device being near or over 70%.
Tools, such as Remind and Class Dojo, are tools that support this type of parent communication. NOt only should teachers send out messages that inform all parents of instructional practice sand goals, but teachers also need to make individual contact with parents about their child's specific needs. Reaching out with not only concerns but with positive messages helped students be successful.
With that said, we need to be selective in choosing the right technologies to be connected. Maybe we should survey parents which technology best meets their need or which they are most apt to pay attention to. We certainly do not want to overload parents with more too much information, but rather, we want to find the best means of getting them the meaningful information.
Are you providing effective communication to your student's parents? Are you using tools that meet both your needs and their needs? What could you do differently to bridge the home - school connection?