Hopkins Elementary School, Norton Elementary School, and Peachtree Elementary School have been named 2016 Georgia Family-Friendly Partnership School Award winners. According to the Georgia Department of Education, the schools represent the best in customer service for Georgia families. In addition, Gwinnetts Sweetwater Middle School was a finalist for the award.
Each winning school was credited with created inviting, easily navigable environments where helpful, courteous staff members are eager to assist students and their families. Through these efforts, the schools are building partnerships with families to improve student achievement. They also provide unique, engaging, and innovative parent engagement programs that are successfully reaching all families in the school. Other schools named as finalists will receive the option of specialized support from the Georgia Association of Educators (GAE) to further develop the welcoming environments in their schools.
The winning schools applied to the Georgia Department of Educations (GaDOE) Parent Engagement Program describing the family engagement programs in their schools. Applications were reviewed by a Family-Friendly Partnership Review Team comprised of representatives from the GaDOE, GAE, Voices for Georgias Children, and the State School Superintendents Parent Advisory Council. Nine finalists were identified, and members of the Review Team made surprise visits to each school, posing as parents looking for information or assistance. The team also conducted walkthroughs of each school and interviewed school staff, parents, students, and community members.
The Family-Friendly Partnership School Award is awarded annually to up to ten schools that go above and beyond to make families feel welcome and work to engage parents in their childrens education.