U.S. Education Secretary Duncan to Address National PTA Convention

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U.S. Education Secretary Duncan to Address National PTA Convention

U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan will deliver the keynote address at the national Parent Teacher Association’s conference at 5:30 p.m. Friday, June 11, at the Memphis Cook Convention Center. He will discuss ways to get parents and entire families involved in schools. Parental involvement in a child’s education, he says, boosts student learning and improves behavior and attendance; and children with families who are engaged in their education are less likely to drop out of school.

The Education Department’s Director of Community Outreach Alberto Retana also will attend the conference and host two roundtables for parents to discuss their roles in education reform. Among other things, he will engage parents in discussions about turnaround strategies for low-performing schools, family engagement to support student achievement, approaches for improving graduation rates and efforts to help their state and districts move toward college and career standards for all students. Parents invited include those from communities where Retana hosted community forums on turnaround strategies for low-performing schools, as well as those from states that have received School Improvement Grants to help with turnaround efforts and those from districts with promising family engagement strategies. The roundtables will take place at 4 p.m. today, Thursday, June 10, and 6:15 p.m. Friday, June 11, following the Secretary’s keynote address. Both roundtables will be held in the convention center.

In addition, Michael Robbins, special assistant in the department’s Center for Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships, will lead a forum on “Responsible Fatherhood and Education Success” from 3 to 5 p.m. today, Thursday, June 10, in the convention center. Topics for discussion include engaging men in education, community and the role of fathering, and fatherhood and economic stability. The forum is part of President Obama’s National Conversation on Responsible Fatherhood and Strong Communities.

The PTA is the largest volunteer child advocacy association in the nation and works in cooperation with many national education, health, safety, and child advocacy groups and federal agencies.

Who : U.S. Education Secretary Arne Duncan
Alberto Retana, director of community outreach, U.S. Department of Education
Michael Robbins, special assistant, Center for Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships, U.S. Department of Education
What : Keynote address and media avail
(Note: Media avail precedes keynote address at 5 p.m. CDT in the onsite Press Office)
When : Friday, June 11
5 p.m. — Media avail
5:30 p.m. — Keynote address
Where : Memphis Cook Convention Center
255 North Main St.
Memphis, Tenn.