Live From Summit 2017: What do Parents Really Want from Charter Schools?

May 17, 2017

The session included a thought-provoking panel moderated by Impact for Education President, Alex Johnston as well as break out discussion time for attendees to discuss parent engagement Alex was joined by panelists, Whitney Henderson of EdNavigator, Kevin Knight, President and founder of full service research company, the K Group LTD, Nina Rees, the President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools, Maya Martin, founder of Parents Amplifying Voices in Education (PAVE), and Aida Rodriguez, the Organizing Director at Parent Revolution. The session gave attendees the opportunity to think critically about parents, their experiences choosing schools for their children, and their perceptions of school choice and charter schools.

One question the audience grappled with during the session was how do we think about and address parent’s lack of information on charter schools. The panel discussed how transforming parents from acceptors to consumers and supporting parents in driving the demand for charter schools. The most important part of a school is the relationships school leaders, instructional leaders, and staff have with the community and the parents. The relationships are essential!

One of the breakout groups discussed the importance of new and current school leaders engaging authentically with the community and how that looks different in every different context.


These provocative conversations spark ideas for discussion for next year’s Summit:

  • How do we think about engaging the community from the beginning of school or product design?
  • How do we ensure these product and schools are community and parent driven?
  • How do we move from parent voice to parent power?