Detroit Public Schools expands 6-month-old Parent University, adding expert-led parenting courses in partnership with Wayne State University, Detroit Public Library, Black Family Development and more

Registration is ongoing for courses that start December 1

Detroit Public Schools today announced it has expanded its 6-month-old Parent University to include accelerated parenting courses and new partnerships with Wayne State University, the Detroit Public Library and other organizations that will allow parents and guardians to earn a “Parent Leader” certification.

The new partnership courses include:

  • Wayne State University: Classes will provide parents with support around their children’s academic success: “Identifying and Supporting Your Child’s Learning Styles” and “Children’s Emotional and Self-Regulation Skills in Learning.”
  • Detroit Public Library: Classes will help parents develop professional skills in Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and how to use the web.
  • Black Family Development: The organization will provide parenting classes utilizing the “Strengthening Families Curriculum” and courses on how to help manage teen stress.
  • Arts & Scraps: The non-profit organization will provide interactive learning activities with parents and Pre-K children to increase ways for parents to connect and build a strong relationship with their child.

Other courses include: Improving Basic Computer Skills; Creating a Family Tradition; How to Fund Your Child’s Education; Healthy Options during the Holidays; Improving Your Child’s Behavior; How to Learn from Your Child (Pre-K lessons) and more.

“We know that having actively engaged parents is a critical component to ensuring our students’ academic success,” said Emergency Manager Jack Martin. “Our newly expanded Parent University aims to educate and empower parents so they can serve as advocates for their children and lifelong teachers in their child’s education.”

A total of 33 free classes are being offered in December and a robust January calendar will be available by mid-December.

Registration is occurring now through November 28 at the district’s eight Parent Resource Centers. Courses are open to all DPS parents, primary caregivers and guardians. Classes for this semester, which are two hours long, will be conducted December 1 through January 23.

The DPS Parent University, which kicked off in Spring 2014, offers a semester of coursework for parents and guardians in four subject areas:

  • Track 1: Academic Success: Helping children succeed in school and in life
  • Track 2: Life Skills: Maximizing your potential
  • Track 3: Parenting: Effectively raising children
  • Track 4: Professional Development: Gaining skills to advance your career

To graduate with a “Parent Leader” certificate, a participant must complete 10 classes during the semester.

Also new this winter, parents can take “Accelerated Courses” in which multiple courses will be offered on December 22, 23, 29 and 30. Participants will partake in interactive activities that engage parents and children in learning together and will take field trips.

Parent University is one strand of DPS’ multi-faceted Parent and Community Engagement program, which is geared toward helping the district increase parent involvement. Programs include training camps that focus on parenting, fun and engaging workshops and much more.

Through a performance-driven partnership with Detroit Parent Network, DPS operates eight parent resource centers that are comfortable spaces for parents and guardians to meet. The centers, which are geographically placed across the city, provide training and resources to parents of DPS students, helping them to be more involved in their children’s education.

Providing parenting skills and increasing parent involvement are major elements of Detroit Public Schools’ five-year Strategic Plan. Through the Strategic Plan, the district launched the first phase of another nationally modeled program: Home-School Teacher Visitations. The visitations add to ongoing robust parenting programs throughout DPS, including workshops at Parent Resource Centers.

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