Parent Mentors
June 7, 2023

Parent Mentor Program Application!

The Parent Engagement Institute (PEI), a partnership between Palenque LSNA and Southwest Organizing Project (SWOP), is looking for community organization and school partnerships in Illinois to apply to start the Parent Mentor Program in their local public schools during school year 2023-2024. The application deadline is June 30, 2023.

Upcoming info session:
Monday, June 12, 2023 at 10:00 am Central Time (US and Canada)*
Click here to register.
*If you cannot attend the info session, visit our website after Tuesday, June 13 to access the informational slide deck and Zoom recording.

Click here to download the 2024 Parent Mentor Program Application.

What is the Parent Mentor Program?

Parent Mentors help address persistent equity gaps in their own children's schools by volunteering in classrooms for two hours/day for at least 200 hours. The Parent Mentors access weekly professional development on instructional practices, leadership and career opportunities, mentoring from a teacher, and stipends. Parent Mentors support each other within their cohort to pursue their dreams and unite the school community for long-term change. For more information, please visit the Parent Engagement Institute website and this fact sheet on program impact.

How will the Parent Engagement Institute support us?

We seek community partners ready to collaborate with their public schools in Illinois to implement the Parent Mentor Program to accomplish these goals. We anticipate adding 3-4 new partner organizations to lead the Parent Mentor Program in their communities, each starting with an average of 2 public schools. SWOP will provide a contract of a minimum of $40,000 per school. Partners and schools may choose cohorts of 6 or 8 Parent Mentors. Contracts are for one year only. Funding is through the Illinois State Board of Education.

Our relationship is more than a grant. Based on over 25 years of running local Parent Mentor programs, Palenque LSNA and SWOP have developed the PEI to coach other community organizations and school districts to replicate the Parent Mentor model and join our network. PEI provides an orientation, a yearlong calendar of professional development workshops for partner organizations, a peer support network, site-specific coaching, and the program documents needed to help make sure your program is successful and true to the original values.  

Who is eligible?

Our priority will be partnering with community-based organizations rooted in Black communities, severely under-resourced school districts, and/or rural communities. Must be in Illinois.

What else do I need to know?

The application deadline is June 30, 2023. We are offering an informational session at 10:00am Monday, June 12, 2023. Click here for registration.  An informational slide deck, recording of the info session, and all application materials will be available on our website here after the session.

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