Learn more about Raise Ready Kids by browsing this FAQ, or jumping directly to I’m a parent or I’m a school administrator, support team member, or teacher.
What is Raise Ready Kids?
Raise Ready Kids is a parent education program that inspires parents to build home cultures that nourish children’s social-emotional and academic learning. Offered in partnership with schools, Raise Ready Kids provides carefully-curated, evidence-based parenting strategies in the form of monthly ~15 minute, podcast-like audio briefings. Optional, periodic virtual discussions offer opportunities to share insights with peers and ask questions. Learn more about program content.
For whom is Raise Ready Kids intended?
Raise Ready Kids supports parents of children in preschool through third grade via their schools, who purchase Raise Ready Kids for their communities. We use the term “parents” broadly to encompass any adult caregivers who embark on the incomparable journey of raising a child. “Parents” may be guardians, grandparents, or any adults who have primary responsibility for caring for a child.
Who is Bill Jackson, and what are his qualifications and areas of expertise?
As the founder of GreatSchools.org and Raise Ready Kids, Bill Jackson has spent the last twenty years helping millions of parents navigate K-12 education. Bill is an “expert of experts,” with a unique ability to synthesize the insights of experts across many fields and package them up into simple strategies that fit into the busy lives of families. A graduate of Yale University, a Parara-Aspen Fellow, and an Ashoka Senior Fellow, Bill has counseled families in choosing schools for their children, and previously taught at the elementary, middle school and college levels. Bill and his wife have two adult daughters, one of whom is a student at the University of Chicago.
How much does Raise Ready Kids cost?
Schools purchase Raise Ready Kids by paying an annual fee, plus a per-student charge based on enrollment in grades for which Raise Ready Kids is made available. Please contact us to learn more.
How can I learn more, sign up, or reach out with additional questions?
Parents can learn more here about how Raise Ready Kids supports them in the incomparable journey of raising a child. If your school is a Raise Ready Kids partner school, you will automatically begin receiving Raise Ready Kids information when the program kicks off at the start of the school year. If your school is not yet a Raise Ready Kids partner, please reach out! We’re happy to provide you with further information about the program.
Schools can learn more here about how Raise Ready Kids puts the wind at the backs of teachers as parents continually build their capacity to support their children’s learning and work effectively with schools. We encourage you to contact us with questions.
I’m a parent…
What does a typical year with Raise Ready Kids look like? What content will I get and how?
Each month, you’ll receive a grade-specific, ~15 minute audio briefing (similar to a podcast, one for each grade level in which you have a child) that teaches a strategy in one of the seven key Raise Ready Kids themes. Listen whenever you can. Throughout the school year, there will be opportunities to connect in monthly virtual discussions to practice strategies and share ideas with peer parents. Learning from and supporting other parents magnifies the value of Raise Ready Kids, but all of the sessions are optional. You decide how much you want to engage, based on your family’s needs.
There’s a lot of parenting information out there. Why Raise Ready Kids?
Parenting is challenging in today’s world! Nearly half of young children today will develop a mental health, behavioral, or substance abuse disorder by the time they are 18. Only a third of high school students graduate with the academic skills needed for college. Raise Ready Kids believes that intentionality in the early years of parenting pays huge dividends later.
We help you develop a strong learning culture at home when your children are young, a culture that supports children developing the knowledge, skills, character, and sense of purpose they’ll need to flourish as adults. We do this by providing:
Holistic, broad parent education. Raise Ready Kids provides evidence-based information about a wide range of topics that matter to parents, including social emotional learning; reading; diversity, equity and inclusion; curiosity; character; health;and digital life.
Curated information in regular, bite-sized chunks. Parents often wait until they’re struggling to access parenting resources (books, professionals). Raise Ready Kids provides information along the way – before you need it – to help prevent problems from arising in the first place. And, because Raise Ready Kids information comes in audio format, you can listen whenever it’s convenient for you.
Community and connection. Parents in each grade receive the same audio briefing at the same time, prompting conversations and sharing at drop-off, parent events, and optional monthly discussion sessions.
What topics does Raise Ready Kids cover? How is this content organized?
Raise Ready Kids offers thought-provoking content across a wide range of topics (see our Program Calendar for details). No matter your child’s grade, you’ll delve into subjects that span seven key themes: social emotional learning; curiosity; reading; character; diversity, equity, and inclusion; health; and digital life. Each month, you’ll engage with a specific strategy within one of these themes.
My school isn’t yet a Raise Ready Kids partner. Can I help them become one, and/or can we sign up as an individual family?
While we don’t currently offer programming for individual families (outside of a school partnership), we’d love to hear from you if you’d like us to reach out to your school with more information about Raise Ready Kids—please contact us.
What is an “Audio Briefing”? Is it like a podcast?
A Raise Ready Kids audio briefing is a ~15 minute audio recording offered to parents within a Raise Ready Kids partner school community. Audio briefings are sent out monthly, and as with a podcast, you can listen on-demand at any time that’s convenient for you – in the car, on a walk, or at home.
What additional information, beyond the audio briefings and discussions, does Raise Ready Kids offer?
Parents receive access to resources such as printable audio briefing summaries with reminders about Raise Ready Kids Strategies and additional sources of information for those who wish to go deeper. Perfect for your refrigerator! We’re always happy to point parents to further resources on topics of interest.
Can we contact Raise Ready Kids with specific questions about our child(ren) and family?
While we don’t provide customized parenting support or consulting services to individual families, our monthly discussion sessions provide opportunities for parents to raise questions important to them.
How can I get involved with Raise Ready Kids at my school?
We are always excited to engage parents who would like to bolster parent education and community in partner schools. Is your school partnering with Raise Ready Kids? Are you interested in helping share valuable parenting resources with your peers? Please reach out!
I’m a school administrator, support team member, or teacher…
For which schools is Raise Ready Kids intended?
Raise Ready Kids is offered for any school providing programming in all or some grades between preschool and Grade 3. Because Raise Ready Kids teaches foundational parenting mindsets and skills, the program is suited for all styles of curriculum and school cultures.
What are the key elements of a year with Raise Ready Kids? What do schools receive?
Raise Ready Kids is a turn-key education program for parents of children in preschool (ages 3 and 4) through third grade, designed to help schools build strong collaborative relationships with parents. It puts wind at the backs of teachers by engaging parents in the science of learning and teaching parenting skills that support learning in a holistic sense.
Each month, we provide parents with evidence-based, grade-specific audio briefings and facilitate virtual parent discussion groups. Raise Ready Kids spans a wide range of topics from social and emotional learning and character development to academic learning and parent-school collaboration.
Along the way, Raise Ready Kids shares program content with teachers, support team members, and administrators. We also offer optional professional development opportunities designed to help teachers engage parents with Raise Ready Kids content and partner more effectively with parents.
We’re busy educating kids! What is the time commitment for administrators or teachers?
Schools are only required to introduce the program to the community and share parent and teacher email addresses with Raise Ready Kids. Beyond this, schools and teachers can choose how deeply to engage with the program. The deeper the integration, the stronger the benefits for both schools and parents, but ultimately, teachers and schools decide what works best for them. Raise Ready Kids provides a wide variety of sample content to share with parents to make it as easy as possible for teachers and administrators to integrate program content into school life. Moreover, schools can choose to pay for custom virtual discussion sessions, scheduled for and tailored to their specific parent communities.
We have a limited budget for parent engagement. Why should we spend it on Raise Ready Kids instead of other programs or speakers?
No other parent education program systematically builds parents’ knowledge and skills across such a broad range of education-related issues. Parents love Raise Ready Kids because it provides valuable information in a steady stream of easily-digestible chunks, along with regular opportunities to learn from and support other parents. The skills and confidence that parents gain from Raise Ready Kids puts wind at the back of teachers, enabling them to go faster and further in their quest to help children develop in a holistic sense, and reducing friction that arises from ineffective parent-school interactions.
Can we work with Raise Ready Kids to customize the program to our school’s needs?
The nature of Raise Ready Kids – with its broad, foundational themes – is intended to suit a wide variety of school cultures and programs. In addition, the monthly discussion sessions provide opportunity for parents to raise questions that might be specific to them or the culture of a particular school. Beyond this, you can choose to purchase custom virtual discussions, which we’ll tailor exclusively to your audience and schedule. If there’s a topic that you feel is especially salient within your community, please reach out. We’re happy to provide more insight into our content and learn about your priorities.
How can we be sure Raise Ready Kids will be a fit with our school’s culture and priorities?
Raise Ready Kids teaches parents a wide range of foundational skills that they need to raise children who are prepared to lead purposeful, impactful lives – skills that schools rarely have time to teach to parents, but which are crucial in bridging the culture gap between school and home. Schools with a wide range of cultures will find that they can more effectively educate students when parents master these skills.
Can we try Raise Ready Kids before we buy?
Yes! Please contact us to arrange a free trial program at your school.