In 2012, Public Education Network (PEN) closed its doors after 21 years. PEN was a network of local education funds (LEFs) -- community based organizations in high poverty school districts across the United States -- that continue to work with their school districts and communities to improve public education for the nation's most disadvantaged children.

At the national level, PEN raised the importance of public engagement as an essential component of education reform. It brought the voice of LEFs and the communities they represent into the national education debate. Finally, PEN gave voice to the essential nature of the connection between quality public education and a healthy and thriving democracy.

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Using NCLB to Improve Student Achievement: An Action Guide for Community and Parent Leaders

November 17, 2003

This guide addresses the various provisions of the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 (called NCLB, or the act). Included are specific rights, roles, and responsibilities that offer parents and community leaders opportunities to send the no-nonsense message that unequal educational opportunities will no longer be tolerated in their public schools.The guide highlights ways NCLB can be used to strengthen the public's voice in education, and to increase community and parental involvement in school-level and district-level operations and decisions:Identifies major areas of NCLB that require or provide for community and/or parental involvement in Title I (Improving the Academic Achievement of the Disadvantaged) and Title II (Preparing, Training, and Recruiting High-Quality Teachers and Principals) of the actProvides general information on the scope and requirements for each major area of community and parental engagementBreaks down legislative language into understandable terms and recommends actions that can be taken by parents and/or the community as a result of their rights under the actProvides a formatted and easily reproduced training tool for parent/teacher meetings and town meetingsIdentifies areas in the act that are silent about community and/or parental engagement, but where PEN believes openings in the law allow parents and/or the community to exercise leadership and take initiative

Give Kids Good Schools

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