38. Getting Parents Involved in Their Children’s Education

To encourage parents to get more directly involved in their elementary children’s education and to improve the speed and efficiency of their children’s early educational career, parents should be financially rewarded for their children’s above average or notably high test scores and/or for extraordinary improvements in test scores over the year. These financial rewards could take the form of tuition fee refunds. Families should be rewarded if their child scores in the top third (for example) of their grade level (averaged throughout all subjects) at that school by being given a $100 refund. Or if, at the end of the year, a student had been among the top five percent of students who has made a dramatic improvement since the beginning of that grade, the family should get a reward of perhaps $100.

Students could also be paid a token amount of money for good or great performance on every significant test they take throughout the year. Earning a 100% on a spelling test could earn them $1, for example. Earning a 90% on a history test could earn them $2, etc. These payments could be adjusted according to the age of the students, difficulty of the tests, and other factors.

Parents should be given a specific summary of what their child is expected to learn by the time he finishes that grade. Every quarter, the parents should receive updates on the progress of their child toward these goals and an assessment on whether the student is on schedule to meet them. Periodically, parents could also receive tips (scientific research articles, teacher comments, district/principal notices, etc.) on how to improve the learning environment and behavioral receptiveness of their child to make learning easier for the child, the teacher, and the parents as well.

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