Over the course of the past decade, the concept of parent involvement in American secondary and higher education has evolved considerably, from occasional, mostly ceremonial activities for a small percentage of parents to carefully conceived and widely available goal-oriented activities that are geared to supporting student success.

As a visitor to the College Parents of America Web site, you are likely to be on the leading edge of this emerging trend, as you probably more than most parents take advantage of school-supported programs that contribute to college readiness, both from an academic standpoint as well as from an attitudinal and behavioral perspective.

According to many leading authorities in the family research field, we now know empirically what was once only guessed at by academics, school administrators and parents themselves: well-developed programs of school and parent partnership can have a very positive effect on student success, from 7th grade all the way through college.

So whether your child is entering middle school, graduate school or some important place in between, you should investigate whether the school that he or she attends creates a welcoming environment for you as a parent and, more importantly, engages you in your desire to play a meaningful role in student-support activities.

No school is likely to want you to play the lead role in supporting student success. But all schools, whether they express it to you directly or not, really do want your support. Good luck, and let us know if we can help.