What is Family Leadership Inc and Parenting Partners?

 “Success starts at home!” Family Leadership empowers families with transformational parenting and leadership skills that equip them to become vital contributors to their children’s academic success. Parents now serve as successful leaders in their homes, schools, and communities.

Family Leadership Inc is the non-profit organization that operates Parenting Partners.  As a non-profit our focus is continually expanding Parenting Partners to serve our school partners as the most effective Professional Learning resource for families and school staff.

Family Leadership Inc Reliably Achieves Three Essential Outcomes:

  • Positive family engagement with schools.
  • Strong home learning environments.
  • Improved academics. Students exceed reading levels, grades go up, and students reach college/career goals.
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Meet the Team at Family Leadership

Our staff supports the District and School Site teams year round. 

Our team of Family Engagement Directors and Team Support Specialists are with you during the training launch events and then make weekly contact with your team leaders. We focus on supporting the process of inviting parents to workshops, supporting the Facilitating team, and growing the program from semester to semester.

We provide survey reports and consult with District Leaders Family Engagement leaders as often as you find helpful.  At the end of the school year we sponsor a National Leadership Consultation as a peer-to-peer event for District Leaders to directly exchange best practices.  This exchange leads to continual improvement in Parenting Partners curriculum, as well as resources for organizing and marketing the experience to parents.

Patty-Bunker-(1)-1

Patty Bunker

National Director, Family-School Partnerships - 877-421-8177
Patty has trained more than 5,000 school-based family-engagement teams in the Parenting Partners™ model.
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steve-Hosey-1

Steve Hosey

Director, Family-School Partnerships - 877-421-8299
Steve is noted for his engaging training style and for his long-term partnerships with school districts.
Read More
Katie-Harri-2-1

Katie Harri

Director, Family Engagement and Training - 877-421-7220
Katie has been leading Parenting Partners™ training events and serving as a conference presenter for more than ten years.
Read More
Malu-Pulido-1

Malu Pulido

National Trainer & Team Support Specialist - 877-421-7208
Malu is an energetic National Trainer who supports school sites as a Team Support Specialist in several states.
Read More
Teresa-Brown-1

Teresa Brown

National Trainer & Team Support Specialist - 803-400-6990
Teresa brings parenting skills, experiences, and her strength of relationship-building to support teams in a collaborative effort.
Read More
Terri-D'Agostino--profile-picture-1

Terry D’Agostino

National Trainer & Team Support Specialist - 877-421-7553
Terri is a Team Support Specialist and National Trainer who came to Family Leadership from a Special Education career.
Read More
David-B-Photo-1

David Bunker

Executive Director - 800-747-1780
David serves as Executive Director of Family Leadership Inc, the nonprofit that sponsors Parenting Partners™.
Read More
Victoria-Hindes1

Victoria Hindes

Marketing Director - 800-747-1780
Victoria is our Marketing and Project Manager who has fueled Family Leadership’s expansion of Professional Learning resources.
Read More
Carol-Shimer-1

Carol Shimer

Team Support Specialist - 877-421-6499
Carol is a Team Support Specialist and National Trainer with Family Leadership.
Read More
David-Porter-1

David Porter

Curriculum Development Projects Coordinator
David has led trainings nationally for 8 years and uses his highly engaging personality to build positive connections.
Read More

Meet the Team at

Family Leadership

Our staff supports the District and School Site teams year round. 

Our team of Family Engagement Directors and Team Support Specialists are with you during the training launch events and then make weekly contact with your team leaders. We focus on supporting the process of inviting parents to workshops, supporting the Facilitating team, and growing the program from semester to semester.

We provide survey reports and consult with District Leaders Family Engagement leaders as often as you find helpful.  At the end of the school year we sponsor a National Leadership Consultation as a peer-to-peer event for District Leaders to directly exchange best practices.  This exchange leads to continual improvement in Parenting Partners curriculum, as well as resources for organizing and marketing the experience to parents.

Patty-Bunker-(1)-1

Patty Bunker

National Director, Family-School Partnerships - 877-421-8177
Patty has trained more than 5,000 school-based family-engagement teams in the Parenting Partners™ model.
Read More
steve-Hosey-1

Steve Hosey

Director, Family-School Partnerships - 877-421-8299
Steve is noted for his engaging training style and for his long-term partnerships with school districts.
Read More
Katie-Harri-2-1

Katie Harri

Director, Family Engagement and Training - 877-421-7220
Katie has been leading Parenting Partners™ training events and serving as a conference presenter for more than ten years.
Read More
Malu-Pulido-1

Malu Pulido

National Trainer & Team Support Specialist - 877-421-7208
Malu is an energetic National Trainer who supports school sites as a Team Support Specialist in several states.
Read More
Teresa-Brown-1

Teresa Brown

National Trainer & Team Support Specialist - 803-400-6990
Teresa brings parenting skills, experiences, and her strength of relationship-building to support teams in a collaborative effort.
Read More
Tommie-Welch-updated-1

Tommie Welch

National Trainer & Team Support Specialist - 877-421-6157
Tommie has been a National Trainer and Team Support Specialist for Family Leadership since 2016.
Read More
David-B-Photo-1

David Bunker

Executive Director - 800-747-1780
David serves as Executive Director of Family Leadership Inc, the nonprofit that sponsors Parenting Partners™.
Read More
Victoria-Hindes1

Victoria Hindes

Marketing Director - 800-747-1780
Victoria is our Marketing and Project Manager who has fueled Family Leadership’s expansion of Professional Learning resources.
Read More
Carol-Shimer-1

Carol Shimer

Team Support Specialist - 877-421-6499
Carol is a Team Support Specialist and National Trainer with Family Leadership.
Read More
David-Porter-1

David Porter

Curriculum Development Projects Coordinator
David has led trainings nationally for 8 years and uses his highly engaging personality to build positive connections.
Read More
Terri-D'Agostino--profile-picture-1

Terry D’Agostino

National Trainer & Team Support Specialist - 877-421-7553
Terri is a Team Support Specialist and National Trainer who came to Family Leadership from a Special Education career.
Read More

History

David and Patty Bunker developed a school-based family leadership initiative in 1996 and created the Parenting Partners curriculum. Since we started Parenting Partners in schools in 1996 we have a history of continually learning best practices from our peer network of school district Family Engagement leaders and researchers, and then bringing that innovation into our network through expanded curriculum with training and certification. 

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outcomes
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Launching the

Capacity Building Model

Patty Bunker, our National Director of Parent Engagement, gained the experience to start Parenting Partners during her practice as a licensed Marriage, Family, and Child Counselor.  She developed the first Parenting Partners curriculum in 1996 for a school which had more than 400 homeless students and immigrant parents from more than 20 countries. 

She tried using existing programs, but none built on the strengths of our parents.  With Parenting Partners she combined adult learning principles, family strengths, and leadership principles to build a network of parents who improve school success results. 

We conducted five years of field-testing with parents in fifty schools with high homeless and immigrant populations.  The Search Institute, the influential youth research organization, contributed editorial staffing to help develop our Manuals and research.  We quickly discovered that despite dramatic poverty statistics, parents became energized by our positive approach. They rapidly became skilled leaders in their homes, schools, and neighborhoods.

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Adoption in

School Districts Nationally

Parenting Partners expanded in 2001 as a resource for school districts nationally.

With an emphasis on building practical skills, parents reported improvement in their relationship to their children. They increased their ability to contribute to their children’s school success, to give their children clear instructions, to provide positive discipline and to reduce arguments in the home.

Graduating parents volunteered in classrooms, became school site leaders, and became effective Parenting Partners Facilitators.

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GREAT-CLOSE-UP

Leadership as the“Secret Sauce” of Capacity Building

David Bunker developed the leadership component of Parenting Partners during a ten year experience with homeless families nationally that resulted in hundreds of families finding permanent housing and community leadership positions.  The discovery from that national initiative called “Home Again” was that parents want the opportunity of leadership and helping their neighbors as much as they want success for their own children.  Parents in the most challenging environments believe that “all kids are our kids.”   Therefore the best way to deliver professional learning experiences to parents are through the TOT model of parents themselves becoming trainers.

Expansion of Parenting Partners Professional Learning Content

We are excited that more than 200,000 parents have now experienced this six-week parent leadership training in cohorts of 10-15 parents. Each school or community has a team of Parenting Partners Facilitators from their own neighborhood, including parents and school staff.

The curriculum has been advanced with input from thousands of Parenting Partners Facilitators and parents — refined through more than 15 editions.

As Districts asked for additional workshop content for Professional Learning, we   created additional curriculum in our Parenting Partners Pro series.

Parenting Partners Pro, short for Parent Proficiency and Professional Learning, includes:

  • Leading Powerful Workshops – Parent boost their skills in facilitating workshops, presenting, and team building. This builds the capacity for parents to lead workshops, creating sustainability for Family Engagement.
  • The Family Meals Challenge – This 3 week workshop series creates rapid improvement in the quantity and quality of time parents spend with their children and teens. School success and wellness improve with more conversation and connection at home. We were able to develop the in-person and online version of Family Meals Challenge with support from the Fansler Foundation.
  • Pro Strengths – The professional learning experience utilizes Gallup’s Strengths Finder™ to bring teams together around their strengths. Cohorts experience the training online while interacting with message boards and an in-person session.
  • Top Study Skills – This self-directed resource gives parents skills to support their children’s study, reading, and learning.