The Surprising Power of Partnering with Parents in Schools

What you can do now to plan for your school’s future?

Course Opens January 6th, 2022

4 Live Zoom Sessions, Starting Thursday, January 20th @ 1:00 - 2:00 PM ET USA

1.20| 1.27| 2.3| 2.10

This online course is designed for Heads of School and School Leaders. Teams are encouraged. It meets for synchronous learning Four(4) sessions for 60 minutes.  Course content will be shared weekly before each session. There will be short yet relevant readings in between each session.  Participants are encouraged to connect weekly with each other to review information.  

Questions and comments will be encouraged after each session and responses will be made available to group participants and/or reviewed at each next session.  Information will be available for you to visit during each week.     

We all know that children learn best when parents learn with them.  Research now informs us that there is a dual school experience with parents and their child’s school - meaning that there is a school experience  for the child, as well as one for the parent. And it has a direct impact on enrollment because it pays attention to the needs of our parents.  We will explore this further.

Until now, I know that many of you may think of parents in a perception different than defined as  “partnership.”  Many schools and administrators often share that it is  best  to “keep them at the door.”  (I used to be there!)  

And I do understand how this “partnership with parents” concept often fights with some perceptions about the role of parents in our schools.  We often think -   they don’t really understand the process of learning, they are demanding, they are worried and anxious, and they do not understand the process of their child’s growth and development and how it impacts the learning. And some parents can be really difficult.  

However,  we have data findings about the “surprisingly” positive power of partnering with parents.  We have seen it happen in schools.  We will talk about this to find the best way for your school to establish partnerships.  And of course, there is not a ' ‘one size fits all” as our school cultures are unique as are our parents!


Instructor Bio:

Renee has been a Montessori Head of School (HOS) and Education Leader for 30+ years. She served as founding HOS of Kingsley Montessori in Boston from 1998 until 2018 growing the school from a one room preschool to a 350 student community, Toddler through Upper Elementary in downtown Boston. She was HOS also at Woodward School for Girls from 2018-2021 working with both Middle School and High School girls. She is a dedicated advocate for, and driver of, excellence in the educational experience of students and parents. Renee is passionate about children and their learning, the development of teachers, and partnerships with parents and the family to achieve the best outcome and learning experience. She is highly committed to assisting all schools to establish a successful path forward. Renee is recognized for her success in shepherding educational institutions through profound growth as well as financial and community crises. Renee is experienced as an adaptive leader who helps schools adapt and thrive in challenging situations. She is experienced in working with a diverse group of schools small to large, from start-up, crisis and turnaround situations, enrollment growth to board leadership and organization in schools. She has demonstrated capability in Enrollment Management, Marketing, Communications and Writing, School Operations, and Budget and Fundraising. Renee brings a profound belief in the value of customer focus/customer relations as it supports enrollment management: retention and new admissions. Renee specializes in the value of the parent and student experience in schools. Renee has served on the American Montessori Society for two terms, with a focus on “Chair of the Head of School” Section and is most comfortable working with Heads of School and their roles. She is a 20+ year Board member of the Montessori Schools of Massachusetts. Renee has a personal commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion through teaching, professional activity and/or service. She is also author of several educational articles including “Parents as Partners” and “On the Road with Maria,” both published in Montessori Leadership. (Renee spent her sabbatical in 2018 visiting 65 Montessori Schools nationally and internationally. Her article describes the experience and findings.) Areas of Expertise: Supporting and coaching Heads of School in all areas of school operations including strategic goal setting and enrollment management (retention and new admissions), parent relationships and communications, faculty professional development including evaluation, school accreditation, tuition strategy, building school communities, and Board development and assessment.

Renee DuChainey-Farkes


Renee DuChainey-Farkes