Date of Award

Fall 12-14-2020

Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education in Teacher Leadership (Ed.D)


Educational Leadership

Committee Chair/First Advisor

Dr. Debra Coffey

Committee Chair

Dr. Raynice Jean-Sigur

Second Committee Member

Dr. Linda Grant


This qualitative study sought to understand how professional working families with elementary age children perceive family engagement. Through one-on-one interviews, the researcher gained insight on how families define and perceive family engagement. The open-ended, one-on-one, semi-structured interviews included a purposeful sample of 8 participants. An analysis of data included a system of coding to link thoughts across data after reviewing, reflecting, and transcribing interviews. Their rich descriptions provide detailed information that is extremely useful to understanding the complexities of family engagement and its ability to support teachers, students, families and schools.

Findings from the study revealed the importance of families, teachers and schools communicating and collaborating to have family engagement success. According to the families in this study, family engagement involves two-way communication and relationship building that allows families and school personnel to collaborate, share their ideas and decision-making. Families also believe family engagement includes the involvement of curricular and extracurricular activities. Additionally, families discussed the important role technology plays in achieving successful family engagement by supporting communication, relationship building and involvement. Results from this study generated recommendations for elementary education stakeholders.