Brief | January 2, 2016

Harnessing the Power of Parents to Support Our Youngest Learners

Brief on the importance of parental engagement with their children that was created as a resource for employers to encourage their employees to engage with their children.

A new brief, Harnessing the Power of Parents to Support Our Youngest Learners, describes how parent engagement is a key component of successful early learning programs.

When children don’t get off to the right start, it’s hard for them to catch up and become the productive adults we need. Society and businesses suffer when we let kids slip through the cracks. What do the most effective efforts to help young children succeed have in common? They work with parents.

The Chicago Child Parent Centers (CPC), for example, make use of Parent Resource Rooms, full­-time parent­-engagement staff, and home visits. Researchers found that “Enhancing early parent involvement [helps set] the child on a trajectory towards positive achievement in school and high motivation towards academics.” That, in turn, feeds into an ongoing cycle of continuing parent involvement and positive student achievement in elementary school. This is good for business: The disadvantaged children in these early education programs did better in school and earned higher incomes later in life.

Read about how business leaders can actively encourage parent engagement with young children, by:

  • Pressing for state and federal policy change
  • Publicizing the importance of early childhood
  • Supporting community efforts to help parents engage with their children
  • Educating employees and giving them more time with their children


  1. National