A Fathers Engagement is Important in Schools
Fathers across this nation want the best for their
children; the best education is in the fore-front of
many fathers minds. Early preparation is important
so encouraging education early is one of the keys to
successful academic stability and consistency in
Quote: “My father gave me the greatest gift anyone
could give another person, he believed in me.”
Early educational exposure can place children in the
front of the educational bus that allows for building
a solid foundation in literacy, math, comprehension,
vocabulary, and the enhancement of thinking skills
that are critical in school curriculum’s that require
cognitive (mental), rational (thinking), and reasoning
In my 26 years as an educator I have seen the need
and importance of fathers involved in the educational
process of their children. Fathers should mentor,
volunteer, chaperone, and be community activists.
Fathers need to be seen to teach ownership of learning,
engagement in activities and set high expectations for
Quote: “A father is a man who expects his son to be
as good a man as he meant to be.” Frank A. Clark
The transformative nature of education shows that
education will consistently change; curriculum’s change,
educational strategies change, instructional requirements
change, benchmarks are modified and assessments are
as diverse as the students in the classrooms. A father’s
involvement should not change, that is one piece of the
educational puzzle that should stay constant and reliable.
The other element is the educator, each with their own
teaching style, methods, strengths, cultural backgrounds
and perceptions that may or may not be influenced by the
lack of involvement by a child’s father. As a parent of
two young adults that transitioned through the educational
system from elementary school to graduating high school.
I understand the worries, frustrations and challenges of
fathers that may have them feel unaccepted, unwanted and
may feel un-needed. As a father and educator; fathers are
needed now more than ever to support education and stable
growth in children. There are too many children emotionally
missing their fathers, there are too many children angry at the
world because their fathers are not present. There are too many
children that do not have the moral character and the ethical
awareness to keep them from the dangers of the School to Prison
Pipeline. Fathers are important to raising children.
Quote: “It is a wise father that knows his own child.” William Shakespeare
Dr. Michael Robinson, CEO of Forest of the Rain Productions
provides 6 Ways Fathers Can Become Engaged In The Academic
Lives of Their Children
1. Observe your child’s classroom at least twice a year.
Visit so you know where the classroom is and who the teacher(s)
are that are educating your children.
2. Participate in at least one Parent/Teacher conference (I say two
so you get to know the teacher and the classroom policies and
3. Assist your children with their homework assignments and
school projects. This helps you the parent understand if your
child is struggling or achieving educational goals.
4. Meet your child’s teacher(s), Principal and Guidance Counselor
get to know names, email addresses and school phone numbers.
5. Check your children’s backpack (book bags) everyday (not for
contraband, but papers, assignments) students are forgetful and
misplace items all the time.
6. Complete and review all forms sent home by the school.
(It is embarrassing to say you missed an important deadline
because you did not read all the paper work).
Chinua Achebe (Nigerian author) statement about the importance
of reading is a universal educational influence, “the importance of
reading, because reading is the foundation of educational success.
Fathers should model this to their children and not just tell them,
If you’re a divorced or divorcing father communicate with the
teacher(s) and administrator(s). Don’t be embarrassed, the more
the school knows of your situation the better communication
will help keep you involved and engaged with your children. During
my divorce I made sure I notified the teachers that I was still going
to be active and continue to visit the school to see my children. I
still wanted progress reports and report cards.
Fathers must be reminded that they do have rights to visit and see
their children unless legally advised not to. Learn your rights and
stay involved with your children. Don’t let rumors, gossip, or other
challenges interfere in helping your children have a successful
Quote: “Until you have a son (or daughter) of your own.. you will
never know the joy, the love beyond feeling that resonates in the
heart of a father as he looks upon his son and daughter.” Kent Nerburn
A father does not realize immediately the impact he has on his children,
if he stays involved, active and engaged he slowly realizes that his life
has less meaning and value if he is not connected to his children. A
father not only is important to children, but also to the community he
lives in. His value rises as his children grow and mature because society
and the community will see that the father has direct and transformative
influence on his children. This resonates through the community and
influences other men to be better fathers.
There is more to being a father than just giving a child life, a father can
teach the gifts and talents his children have. Research shows that men
who are positively involved in their children’s lives can give their children
better outcomes in children through high expectations to be better
than their father and mother.
A male model for both boys and girls shows better educational success,
function better socially and are more stable emotionally and behaviorally.
The tragedy and frightening aspect of fatherhood is that fathers are
seen as risks or ignored. Father’s today feel excluded and ostracized,
causing them to feel anger, frustration and abandoning their responsibilities.
Young fathers are hit the hardest because of the challenges of employment,
education and social stereotypes society has on them. This is not a valid
reason to quit being a father, but when depression and low self-esteem are
present this has hard psychological effects on young fathers.
Engaging fathers from very early stages of a baby’s life is vital for a
connection between child and father. Weeks after a baby’s birth are when
the bond between father and child begins to form. Involving fathers at this
stage can be the first step in a life-long relationship from which children feel
secure and blossom. Social interactions are positive and productive
in children they are mentally and emotionally healthier.
Quote: “I don’t even know how to speak up for myself, because I don’t
really have a father who would give me the confidence or advice. Eminem
Children need fathers who are committed to fulfilling their responsibilities
to their children. Charles Augustus Ballard, founder of the Institute for
Responsible Fatherhood and Family Revitalization, stated, “People are saying
it takes a village to raise a child, but first it takes a mother and a father, who
are understanding, compassionate, nurturing, and responsible working together
to teach discipline, character, integrity, and morals in their children.”
Fathers need to be supportive, encouraging and engaged in their children if
not the social ills of society drain and destroy the family.
Fathers make this the first day, the first week, of the rest of your live to be
involved in your children’s life for the rest of your life.