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N.Y.C. School System Issues Parent-School Partnership Challenge

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New York City public schools are being asked to develop innovative programs to form stronger partnerships with parents and boost student achievement.

The Essential Allies Innovation Challenge will provide up to $15,000 in private funding for as many as 12 schools to implement their idea along with support from the New York City Department of Education. The initiative was launched Oct. 10 during the New York City Department of Education's third annual Parents as Partners Week.

"When schools and families work together to support learning, everyone benefits," Schools Chancellor Dennis M. Walcott said in a news release.

Only New York City's 280 iZone schools are eligible to apply for the challenge. The city's iZone schools provide personalized learning to meet the needs, motivations and strengths of individual students, according to the department of education's website.

Challenge applicants must develop a creative idea and an implementation plan that is personalized to meet the specific needs of parents. Schools must demonstrate the feasibility of their plan, establish benchmarks to track its progress, and gather community and family feedback about their proposed program. The project must improve the school experience for families, students and teachers.

"The solutions that will come from this challenge may inspire new models of engagement from which many New York City public schools, families, and especially students could benefit," Jesse Mojica, the executive director of the Division of Family and Community Engagement in the city's department education, said in the release.

See our full coverage of parent empowerment issues.

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