Parent report cards: Gutsy or pushy?

“We’ve never believed that we could educate kids without the parents,” Moskowitz told him recently. “We’re not that good.”

Now Success is going a step farther — maybe too far, writes Pondiscio. The school is sending home parent report cards.

“Parent Investment Cards” evaluate how well parents perform in “school readiness,” “homework supervision,” and “parent responsiveness and investment.” Like their children, parents can be deemed “meeting expectations” (green), “approaching expectations” (yellow), or “not meeting expectations” (red).

Pondiscio has talked to several Success parents who feel insulted by the report cards.

“I’m doing everything that I can,” a low-income South Bronx mother told him. “How are you gonna give me ‘approaching expectations’ when I’m killing myself?”

Success charters have long wait lists, so perhaps Moskowitz can afford to alienate some parents. But is she crossing the line from gutsy to pushy (and patronizing)?

Caren Lissner imagines a middle-class school district’s parent report card on SheKnows. To excel in “participation,” a parent must take time off work to show up for the “PTA Trike-A-Thon, Yoga-Thon, Kale-a-Thon, Autumnal Equinox Luncheon, Costume Parade, 100th Day of School, plus graduations from kindergarten, first, second, third, fourth and fifth grades,” all held in the middle of the day.


This post was was republished courtesy of joanne

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Joanne Jacobs

Joanne Jacobs

Joanne was born in Chicago and named after her grandfather, Joe Jacobs, who’d been a police reporter for the Omaha Bee-News. At the age of eight, she and her best friend became the creators and co-editors-in-chief of "The Wednesday Report" for four years. After years as a San Jose Mercury News columnist, Joanne started an education blog in 2001 and wrote "Our School: The Inspiring Story of Two Teachers, One Big Idea and the Charter School That Beat the Odds." She freelances for online sites, newspapers, magazines, foundations and think tanks. In addition to blogging at, Joanne writes Community College Spotlight at
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