MCSD Whiteboard: District Accountability Committee begins important work

Moffat County School District

At Moffat County School District, we take seriously the role we play in the Moffat County community.

It’s front of mind the impact a school district has on its community. MCSD feels strongly that the pulse of Craig and Moffat County beats, in so many ways, through the heart of its schools.

That means we know the community needs the district to be successful, but it also means we need the community to be successful. That’s part of the reason for the District Accountability Committee.

To be clear, it’s also state law that a school district holds these regular councils of administration, parents, staff and community members. There are specifically outlined purposes for this committee, and the district is careful to be compliant with those statutory requirements. But DAC is more than due diligence. It’s an important way for Moffat County schools to be more connected with Moffat County.

At last week’s DAC meeting, the first of the young school year, the responsibilities and priorities of the DAC were discussed. A few of our most plugged-in community members and parents were present, as well as a pair of teachers and some senior administration. 

The discussion ranged from dollars and cents to processes and procedures, including capital projects and educator evaluation. But it became most animated and exciting when the topic of parent engagement was raised.

Just like a school district does better when a community is engaged, students do better when their parents are engaged. It’s so important that our students parents and guardians get involved in their education.

Homework, attendance, behavior and being ready to learn when a student comes to school all start at home. If a parent knows what’s going on in the classroom, what their child is working on and learning, where he or she can improve and what’s important and coming up, that child is much more likely to succeed both inside and outside of the school building.

But, in too many cases, this is somewhere the partnership between school and parent often falls short. Whether the school isn’t reaching out or connecting the right way or the parent isn’t responding, there is not nearly enough parent engagement in Moffat County schools. This isn’t a problem unique to our area, but it’s one we’re experiencing.

During last week’s DAC, some barriers were discussed, along with ideas of how to improve the chances of engagement. Direct appeals, different messaging techniques and considerations of language, transportation and availability gaps were brought up. As a district, it’s important we do all we can to improve our communication with parents, and so we’re looking at where we can get better at this. But we need help. Not only does feedback like what was discussed at DAC last week make a difference, but a commitment from the community to become part of the process is also critical.

So let’s talk. If you have a student in Moffat County schools, what would help you feel more involved in your student’s learning? If you want to be involved but struggle to be, what can we as a district do to help you overcome those barriers? How can we help make this happen together?

If you have ideas or thoughts, please share them with us here:

We’ve got work to do to get our kids to where they need to be. Let’s work together.

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