The Mission of the Parental Readiness and Empowerment Program
The Parental Readiness and Empowerment Program (PREP) seeks to improve K-12 student performance, retention, and access to equal educational opportunities. We serve low-income and minority children in targeted communities by increasing parental engagement in education and ensuring that parents become successful advocates for their children. Our goal is for every child to have meaningful access to a quality education.
PREP is about improving education for all students. We use a creative model, combining the energies of parents, schools, civil rights groups, the private bar and the corporate sector. Together we create a powerful potential for advocacy on behalf of students who are often excluded from or denied educational opportunity.
PREP is about equality. It is about education. It is about ordinary people learning to advocate for themselves. And it is a growing force that began as a single pilot program, and is scaling up to sites across the country.
Why parental empowerment? Why PREP?
Parental empowerment is an important part of ensuring that children have the opportunity to succeed in education. Research clearly demonstrates that parental involvement is one of the pillars of educational achievement. The difference between an involved parent and a disengaged one can make as much as a whole grade level difference in a child’s academic achievement.
Parental engagement matters for academic success in a variety of ways:
- Parental effort correlates with high achievement and high levels of school resources
- Parental involvement produces higher achievement in urban schools
- Parental engagement has long-term effects on student success
- PREP can improve the amount and quality of this parental engagement. Attendees of our workshops and
trainings report an improved ability to advocate on behalf of their children. Programs that encourage parents to be active in their children’s education can result in improved long-term academic success.
By focusing on low-income and minority communities, PREP will improve academic achievement for historically disadvantaged populations, and help them to advocate for themselves in the face of exclusion or discrimination. PREP therefore works to reverse historic trends of marginalization and neglect, and gives parents the resources they need to ensure that the next generation never has to suffer from unequal access to opportunity and success.