GEAR UP Parents at Evergreen

True Colors Parent Workshop
Lakes High School Parent Volunteers support a

Parents are key to their children’s academic achievement. Research shows that when parents are involved, students earn higher grades and test scores, enroll in higher-level programs, are promoted, earn credits, attend regularly, have better social skills and behavior, and graduate and go on to higher education. Strikingly, this is true across families of all economic, racial, ethnic, and educational backgrounds.

At Gear Up, we recognize the important role parents play in the educational success of their students. One of the GEAR UP goals is to help parents understand the High School Graduation Requirements and assist them with college planning and preparation for their children. We feel that by empowering parents with knowledge and information, they will be more confident and better equipped to help their child be successful with their post-secondary high school goals.


Junior Visits
Parent Resource Group Members at Oakville HS
putting up sign for the schools resource center.

The Many Faces of Parent Involvement

Parents are the first to agree that the meaning and face of parent involvement changes from elementary to middle school and changes even more drastically from middle school to high school. In high school students want to be independent and feel it is not necessary for parents to be in or around the school.

Table 1: Ways Parents Are Involved with School

Types of Support Parents Provide*Percent of Parents
Review and sign progress reports87%
Review and sign report cards86%
Attend parent conferences79%
Monitor child’s absences78%
Ensure a quiet place to study70%
Support involvement in community service/extra-curricular activities67%
Check homework daily64%
Keep in contact with teachers58%
Volunteer time at school23%
Belong to the PTSA15%

*Based on 474 parent responses to the GEAR UP Survey.

In reality, high school parents need to be more involved, but this involvement will have a different look. Supporting your students’ learning and understanding the academic process has become invisible to the school staff, but an important face of parent involvement. A survey of GEAR UP parents confirms this position. (see table 1)

GEAR UP parents are provided through various venues opportunities to attend mini-college information sessions, assist with GEAR UP functions, attend the annual College Family Day, and receive a College Resource Toolbox, which provides valuable information to prepare students for postsecondary education.

"Larry, I just wanted to thank you and Gear Up for the wonderful College Resource Tool Boxes!  I have one that my son David uses and it has been so handy.  He has become accustomed to using it.  Whenever things come in the mail, they go right in the box.  When he ask for something, we tell him "it's in your Gear UP box. Thank you again for the little things your program does, to assist these kids in acquiring their future goals."
—Wendy Delk

For more specific information, visit the additional GEAR UP Parent involvement web pages:

The Evergreen State College project provides parents with a variety of college preparation resources and opportunities for parents to attend events to gain college preparation knowledge. The GEAR UP Parent resources and events offered are designed for our GEAR UP parents, and may vary depending on the needs of each school or parent group.