Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Learn more about Raise Ready Kids by browsing this FAQ, or jumping directly to I’m a parent or I’m a school administrator or teacher.

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 15-20 minute, podcast-like audio briefings. Then, parents can join their peers in periodic virtual discussions to share insights and ask questions. Learn more about how Raise Ready Kids works or about program content.

Raise Ready Kids supports parents of children in preschool (beginning at age 3) through third grade via their schools, who purchase Raise Ready Kids for their parent communities.

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 parents. 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 daughters who attend the University of Chicago.

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.

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 by helping parents support children’s holistic learning and development. We encourage you to contact us with questions.


I’m a parent…

Each month, you’ll receive a grade-specific, 15-20 minute audio briefing (similar to a podcast) 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, 30-minute facilitated virtual discussion groups to practice strategies and share ideas with your peer parents in your grade. 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.

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. To prepare for the everyday challenges of parenting, Raise Ready Kids provides evidence-based information and insight on the wide range of topics that matter to parents, including social and emotional learning, motivation, character development, academic learning, and partnering with teachers.
  • 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—so you can avoid problems. Plus, Raise Ready Kids information comes in audio format. You can listen whenever convenient for you.
  • Community and connection. Raise Ready Kids connects you to fellow grade-level parents so you can learn, practice, and grow together—an indispensable resource in your parenting journey.

Raise Ready Kids offers thought-provoking content across a wide range of topics. No matter your child’s grade, you’ll delve into subjects that span social and emotional learning, discipline, character development, motivation, academic learning, effective school partnership, and much more.

Raise Ready Kids is organized across seven key themes: Partner, Listen, Talk, Read, Curate, Play, and Anchor. Each month, and at each grade level, you’ll engage with a specific strategy within one of these themes. For example, during the month focusing on the “Listen” theme, Pre-K families will learn about the “Listen Together” Strategy; Kindergarten families will discuss “Conversation,” and parents of second graders will learn how to become “Emotion Detectives.”

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.

A Raise Ready Kids audio briefing is a 15-20 minute audio recording offered to parents within a Raise Ready Kids partner school community. Audio briefings are released 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.

Parents receive one-page PDF “cheat sheets” that provide handy reminders about Raise Ready Kids Strategies and point to additional sources of information for parents who want to go deeper. Perfect for your refrigerator! And, we’re always happy to point parents to further resources on topics of interest.

While we don’t provide customized parenting support or consulting services to individual families, our facilitated virtual discussion sessions (four times per year) and “Ask Me Anything” sessions (three times per year) provide many opportunities for parents to raise questions important to them. And, we’re always happy to point Raise Ready Kids parents to additional resources that may be helpful.

We are proud to offer the Raise Ready Kids Parent Facilitators program for parents who would like to bolster parent education and community in partner schools. Parent Facilitators lead small breakout groups during virtual discussions two to three times per year. Training is provided: facilitators watch a brief training video at the beginning of the school year, whenever convenient for them. They also receive early access to emerging Raise Ready Kids content and have the opportunity to provide feedback that helps shape future content. Is your school partnering with Raise Ready Kids? Are you interested in becoming a Parent Facilitator for your grade? Learn more or reach out!


I’m a school administrator or teacher…

Raise Ready Kids is offered for any school providing programming in all or some grades between preschool (age 3) to Grade 3. Because Raise Ready Kids teaches parents foundational, universal parenting skills, the program is suited for all styles of curriculum and school cultures.

Raise Ready Kids is a turn-key education program for parents of children in preschool (PK-3 and PK-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 and administrators. We also offer optional online professional development opportunities designed to help teachers engage parents with Raise Ready Kids content and partner more effectively with parents.

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.

No other parent education program combines proactive, comprehensive content, with community-building—without increasing the burden on teachers or administrators. 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.

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 discussion sessions provide ample opportunity for parents to raise questions that might be specific to them or the culture of a particular school. In addition, 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.

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.