The Parent Center network shares a common list of priority topics from the Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) at the U.S. Department of Education. This Hub page focuses on the priority topic of best practices in outreach. It’s divided into the following sections:
Why These Resources?
Dozens of documents and resources on outreach were identified by a collaborative of Parent Center directors and coordinators. The team then painstakingly reviewed each one in terms of its quality and usefulness, as well as its relevance to Parent Centers. This page is the result and lists only those resources rated by the review team as being of high quality, usefulness, and relevance to Parent Centers.
Deep appreciation goes out to the review team—each of these people shared their time and expertise to ensure that Parent Centers have top-quality outreach materials that are also well-suited to the purpose and mission of Parent Centers.
Hispanic & African-American
Culture Counts: Engaging Black and Latino Parents of Young Children in Family Support Programs (pdf, 1 mb)
An overview of family support programs, identifies effective features and strategies for reaching and engaging black and Latino families to support young children’s development. Synthesizes research on parent engagement and potential barriers with recommendations for designing, adapting, and evaluating culturally-relevant family support programs and services.
Reaching & Engaging with Hispanic Communities: A Research-Informed Communication Guide for Nonprofits, Policymakers, and Funders (pdf, 3.2 mb)
Focusing on the Hispanic community and the socioeconomic struggles related to a majority of that population—serves to help service providers and educators serve Latino children and their families by building communication strategies.
Cultural Awareness and Connecting with Native Communities (doc, 2.87 mb)
Written for Parent Centers and offering information on Tribal etiquette and culture. Includes suggestions for connecting with Native communities in ways that enhance communication and connectedness.
Culture Card: A Guide to Build Cultural Awareness (pdf, 1 mb)
General briefing to enhance cultural competence while providing services to American Indian/Alaska Native communities. Thorough topic breakdowns ensure “Five Areas of Cultural Competence” can be followed per information provided.
Introducing Your Parent Center to American Indian Communities (doc, 2.87 mb)
Written expressly for Parent Centers, suggests several “first steps” in approaching and building relationships or strengthening partnerships with Native American and Alaskan Native communities within regions served by Parent Centers.
Achieving Cultural and Linguistic Competence in Information Dissemination Activities (pdf, 171 kb)
Lays out a process for the development phase of new publications, helping authors consider cultural and linguistic differences and representations. Guidelines are intended as a point of reference and stimulate careful consideration for anyone writing or producing information for any audience.
Building Partnerships: Key Considerations with Engaging Underserved Communities (pdf, 1.3 mb)
Geared specifically toward guiding MHSA outreach and addressing health disparities—introduces guiding principles of community engagement with underserved communities and suggests specific strategies for County Mental Health Departments to nurture sustained partnerships with communities.
Culture Brokering: Providing Culturally Competent Rehabilitation Services to Foreign–Born Persons from CIRRIE (online monograph)
Assists users in understanding the culture-brokering model and how to implement it with foreign-born consumers. Provides guides for working within this framework, discusses cross-cultural communication, provides examples and recommendations related to techniques for culturally appropriate communication with foreign-born consumers.
Minority Parent & Community Engagement: Best Practices and Policy Recommendations for Closing the Gaps in Student Achievement (pdf, 605 kb)
Best for PTI directors—looks at improving student achievement and helping close the achievement gap by increasing the inclusion and engagement of parents of color in their children’s education. Includes general practices for engaging minority parents and successful strategies for strengthening parent engagement.
National Center for Cultural Competence (Website)
Under the Georgetown University Center for Child and Human Development, the NCCC is dedicated to supporting cultural competence with a focus on health care settings. Well-reviewed articles and resources inform policy for a broad audience. Information on various pages is recommended for Parent Center leadership training staff on cultural and linguistic competence.
Open Doors for Multicultural Families Professional Webinars: Working Effectively with Diverse Youth & Families in Transition webinar training (Webinars)
Five webinars focusing on families of children with special health care needs and disabilities; includes handouts and checklists. Some data specific to Washington State, but great range of topics covered. Issues include interpreters, transition planning, person centered planning, and collaborative partnerships.
Promising Practices In Cultural Competence: Open Doors for Multicultural Families (pdf, 637 KB)
Brief on how Open Doors for Multicultural Families has implemented culturally competent practices and reached widely diverse clientele. Good set of “essential elements” and “lessons learned” offered. Provides fact sheet and many examples of best practices.
Using Outreach to Increase Access (Web page)
Online toolkit demonstrates how to implement an outreach service to expand access to health services, practices, and products. Examples answer the questions of what outreach is, when is it needed, and give suggestions of common methods of outreach and creative and nontraditional ideas for implementation. Also touches upon cultural awareness.
Using Technology in Outreach
A Consumers Guide to Case Management Systems
Helps tech users decide which case management system is right for their organization’s needs and budget. Description of the process and guidance through evaluation of listed systems is adaptable for various systems a PTI is looking at.
Crash Course in Infographics (pdf, 2.4 mb)
Guide with information, best practices, and tips and tools on creating successful infographics. PTIs can use for intra-organization communication and communicating with stakeholders. Also helpful for producing flyers, web content, and in learning opportunities.
Unleashing Innovation: Using Everyday Technology to Improve Nonprofit Services (pdf, 7.4 mb)
Discusses data revealing four core elements common to organizations who use technology to successfully innovate program delivery and improve how constituents are served. Helpful for nonprofits in data collecting/analysis efforts and use of technology to expand efforts.
Thanks to the Review Team
A team of Parent Center directors and coordinators tackled the task of identifying outreach resources of top quality, usefulness, and relevance to Parent Centers. The CPIR is enormously grateful to the workgroup members who contributed their time and expertise to making this a top-quality resource page. Specifically, we send our thanks to:
- Andrea Bridges, Project Coordinator: The Branch/MPTAC (WA)
- Kelly Henderson, Executive Director: Formed Families Forward (VA)
- Andrea Mann, South Central Regional Parent Mentor: Michigan Alliance for Families (MI)
- Miho Onaka, Program Coordinator: Open Doors for Multicultural Families (WA)
- Nelsinia Ramos, Parent Services Coordinator: WI FACETS; Multicultural Specialist: R4PTAC (WI)
- Esperanza Reyes, Parent Consultant & Project Coordinator: Utah Parent Center (UT)
- Judy Wiley, Program Manager: NAPTAC (NM)