In-Service Training to Support and Enhance Teachers' Invitations to Parental Involvement
Shepard, Katherine Wilson
Considerable research evidence confirms that parental involvement is associated with positive school outcomes for children; it also confirms that teachers’ invitations are a strong predictor and motivator of parents’ decisions to become involved. However, the majority of teachers are not trained to work with families and do not feel equipped to do so. One response to this problem is in-service training. The purpose of this study was to develop, offer, and evaluate the consequences of an in-service parental involvement training program for public elementary school teachers in an urban setting. Results indicated that participants reported increased self-efficacy for involving parents and perceived multiple components of program structure and content as enjoyable, useful, and effective in enhancing their work with parents. Results are discussed with reference to the design of successful professional development experiences related to parental involvement and directions for future research.