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One instrumental step in promoting overall children’s academic success across the trajectory of early childhood, elementary, middle, and secondary grades is purposefully establishing positive linkages for families and schools through a shared partnership. By facilitating an ongoing collaborative approach to sustain family engagement practices both in and out of the classroom, schools can help to build parents’ capacity to effectively support their children’s academic development. This article is an overview of the literature based on research from the last two decades on the effects of family involvement and home to school partnerships to student academic achievement within a US context. It addresses the sociocultural implications for establishing home and school partnerships with school-wide pedagogical recommendations in supporting diverse families and K-12 educators in the collaborative work for the educational success of all children. Finally, the article identifies methods to proactively engage all families with a paradigm shift on rethinking traditional methods to skills of cultural competence that honors family backgrounds, validates cultural strengths, and corroborates with the contributions that families make to engender academic success for their children.


Originally published in Improving Schools Journal, 17(1), 18-29.

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