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Parental Involvement Day and CDC to Focus on School Health

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from guest blogger Michele Molnar:

This year, National Parental Involvement Day, on Nov. 15, sheds a spotlight on strategies to engage parents in school health, according to Kevin S. Walker, founder and president of Project Appleseed.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) joined with Project Appleseed to release resources and host events for this year's focus on parent engagement in school for the 18th annual parental involvement day.

Parents and schools can start on the CDC's new landing page, where they will find a link to a comprehensive strategy guide for involving parents in school health. The site also offers fact sheets for educators and parents, a brochure, PowerPoint® slides for promoting parent engagement and a facilitator's guide.

Events will include a webinar called "Engaging Parents to Foster Healthier, More Successful Students" from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. EST on Nov. 14, and a Twitter chat on Nov. 15 from 2:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. EST.

The Nov. 14 webinar, hosted by the CDC, will involve a discussion of how parent engagement in school health positively influences the health of children and adolescents. It will feature Joyce Epstein, director of the Center on School, Family, and Community Partnerships and National Network of Partnership Schools at Johns Hopkins University, and Shannon Michael, adolescent health researcher at the CDC. The speakers will identify evidence-based strategies and actions for engaging parents in school health. For registration information go to: https://www3.gotomeeting.com/register/876242102

The Nov. 15 interactive Twitter chat with the CDC's Division of Adolescent and School Health will cover "Getting Parents Engaged in School Health." It will feature Kevin Fenton, Director of CDC's National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB Prevention, and subject matter experts Michael and Patricia Dittus, behavioral scientist in CDC's Division of STD Prevention. Again, the discussion will focus on evidence-based strategies and actions for engaging parents in school health. To participate on Twitter, follow #HealthyYouthChat.

"The CDC approached us about partnering on this," Walker said in an interview. "When I saw the engagement guide, I got excited because it has really good research supporting it, since it hooks into Joyce Epstein's six types of family engagement. I looked at the applicability to average parents--would it make sense to them--and it certainly does," Walker said.

Besides being available on the CDC site, the publication will be provided as a free tool in Project Appleseed's Parental Involvement Toolbox.

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