Curriculum Strategies: Social Skills Intervention for Young African-American Males

By George R. Taylor | Go to book overview

6
Parental Roles in Social Skills Development

Educators must experiment with innovative ways of involving parents in the school ( Harry & McLaughlin, 1992). Over the last several decades, the school has had a difficult time in establishing effective partnerships with parents. Generally, teachers tend to have little interaction with parents. Involvement and interaction may be improved through reporting to parents, holding conferences at times that are conducive for parents to attend, seeking parental assistance in planning and participating in field trips, in serving as resource individuals, tutoring children, and assisting with small groups planning special events.

Much of the noninvolvement has occurred because of hostility or parental indifference toward the school. Many schools serving young African-American males consider their parents a nuisance, unproductive, uneducated, lacking social grace, and not well informed on education and social issues. The relationship is further strained when parents internalize the negative behaviors displayed by the school and come to view the school as a place where they are unaccepted and which has no interest in them as individuals. There must be a total shift in the paradigm. The school must accept these parents and provide training and assistance in desired areas to effectively involve them in the educational process. Parental involvement should become a prime goal for all schools.

Parents may stimulate the social growth and development of their children in various ways. Designing everyday situations for them to explore, providing activities to promote self-esteem and confidence, praising them frequently, providing support, and assisting in creating

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