Students face many barriers throughout their education and school transitions have always been a significant challenge for many. Moving to a new school always comes with a host of challenges whether you are moving into kindergarten as a 5-year old or moving to a four-year university as an 18-year old. Schools attempt many different interventions at each of these levels but one common theme, that transcends through a student’s entire journey and increases the chances of a success, is engaging families throughout its entirety. Parents are typically much more involved in a student’s earlier years of school, typically elementary school, but this engagement seems to decrease as a student gets older and moves into different schools. Having parents involved early in their child’s education is vitally important for adolescent development, it is just as important to keep them engaged throughout all of it, every transition is just as important as the previous. Using families as a tool and a resource to help a student through these difficult times in school will help all students become more successful academically, socially, and behaviorally. There are many barriers to increasing family involvement. Some of these barriers are due to family circumstances such as busy schedules and childcare needs but some of these barriers (often unknowingly) are from the school and district itself like inherent biases from staff and teachers or a (perceived or actual) lack of communication between school and home. Overcoming these barriers and making a stronger connection between school and home remains a critical intervention to aid students in making transitions between schools.

Date of Award

Fall 12-7-2020

Document Type

Capstone Paper


Counselor Education

First Advisor

Anquinetta Calhoun



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