Historically and today, when parents are more involved, students do better regardless of race, class or parents’ level of education. A recent survey found that Hispanic students are the least likely to say that their parents are involved enough in their education and the most likely to report that they want more parental involvement.

The need is certainly there from the student perspective. And education continues to rank as the number one priority and concern by Hispanics in America (no, it’s not immigration).

Growing involved

For many Latino families then, the question is not whether to get involved but how, especially with all of the changes going on in our classrooms. Fortunately, the National PTA, where I served as a board member and signed an MOU with this summer, has teamed up with the Hispanic Heritage Foundation and other organizations to launch a first-of-its-kind, public service partnership called Be A Learning Hero, which provides clear and easy-to-use resources for parents, in English and Spanish.

The effort focuses on five helpful, practical tips:

  1. Keep the goal in mind: Learn what the specific learning goals are for your child’s new grade.

  2. Maximize your child’s potential: Know where your child excels and where there is room to grow.

  3. Be involved: Spend time in your child’s school and be in regular contact with his or her teacher.

  4. Embrace character and resilience: Promote your child’s emotional intelligence — it matters for academic success

  5. Bring it home: Make home another space for learning, and get tools for boosting your child’s math and English skills at the kitchen table.

With the ever-shifting demographics (nearly 40 percent of all births in the US are projected to be Hispanic by 2050), I like to say that America needs the Latino community to succeed going forward for our nation to reach the top of the global rankings. Success starts with education and educating our parents to do their part is critical.