Fathers and Education

When fathers are involved in the lives of their children, especially their education, children learn more, perform better in school, and exhibit healthier behavior. Even when fathers do not share a home with their children, their active involvement can have a lasting and positive impact. There are countless ways to be involved in your child’s education at all ages. This section of the National Responsible Fatherhood Clearinghouse website highlights some of them.
According to a 2007 National Center for Education Statistics Report:
  • 92% of students in grads K though 12 had parents who reported receiving any information from the school on the student’s performance.
  • 83% had parents who received any information about how to help with homework.
  • 59% of students in grads K through 12 had parents who were "very satisfied" with their child’s. school; 55% had parents who were very satisfied with the school’s parent-staff interactions.

Consider ways that your program can partner with local schools and Head Start programs to better engage dads in their child's education. The Collaboration Strategies page has some resources to help you think about general partnerships. 

For more information on tips and ways to encourage the fathers in your program to get involved, visit the Get Involved with School page.

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Quick Tips for Dads

  • Check your child’s homework, make sure to see what was assigned, not just what was finished.
  • Join a parent organization at your child's school, like the PTA, to show your child that you care about how he or she does in school.
  • Be a chaperone at your child’s next school function or field trip.
  • Talk regularly with your child’s coaches, teachers, and club leaders.
  • Volunteer with your child’s sports team. Bring water, or oranges to a game, or help keep score.
  • Get everyone in the family a library card, and start visiting! Not sure where the nearest library is, try searching online, or ask your child’s teachers.

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Other Relevant Resources

Department of Education
Find information on education policies that affect your kids, homework help tips (in English and Spanish), tips on monitoring homework, and lots of helpful tools!

National Head Start Association
The National Head Start Association is a private not-for-profit membership organization dedicated exclusively to meeting the needs of Head Start children and their families. The site includes resources, research, and conference information.

National PTA
The national PTA website includes links to PTA programs, conference information and a male involvement section.

Reading is Fundamental
Reading Is Fundamental, Inc. prepares and motivates children to read by delivering free books and literacy resources to those children and families who need them most. Website includes a page for kids, and one for parents, including book suggestions by age group.

Especially for Parents
U.S. Department of Education resources specifically designed to help parents be more involved with their children's education from homework help to understanding special needs to preparing for college.

Key Things Parents Can Do To Make Sure Their Children Are Prepared For The 21st Century
U.S. Department of Education sponsored guide following No Child Left Behind guidelines and tips for parents to help their children in school.

Toolkit for Hispanic Families
Choices for Parents sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education with resources specifically designed to help Hispanic families, including resources in Spanish.

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