SWIFT Family & Community Newsletter

Welcome to SWIFT’s Family & Community Newsletter! We are excited to offer free resources to help engage families and communities in equity-based inclusive education and promote improved social, academic, and behavioral outcomes for ALL students!  We hope you will share this and future newsletters with your family and community networks. If this SWIFT newsletter was shared with you, don’t miss the next one — sign up to be added to our mailing list!

What is equity-based inclusive education?

Equity-based inclusive education means all students, including those with the most significant support needs, are educated in age-appropriate classes in their neighborhood schools. Students receive the help they need to be full members of their general education classrooms. Every member of the school community is welcomed, valued, and participates in learning. Inclusive education means that districts support schools, and schools and families support one another as ALL students are welcomed and included in their communities.  

"My child belongs in my heart; he belongs in our family; and he belongs in our local school."

Sue Swenson, Deputy Assistant Secretary, OSERS, US DOE

Trusting family partnerships contribute to positive student outcomes. Everyone benefits when family members and school staff have respectful, mutually beneficial relationships with shared responsibility for student learning; options for meaningful involvement in their children’s education and in the life of the school; and the school responds to family interests and involvement in a culturally responsive manner.

For resources to share with your school community about trusting family partnerships, check out the videos, PowerPoints, discussion guides, and steps to get you started in the SWIFT Field Guide

Transitioning to an Inclusive Setting

Moving your child into his or her neighborhood school from an out-of-district placement (or simply from the school across town) offers new opportunities and a different set of challenges. Read here to learn how families and schools can work together to create a seamless transition. 

Journey from Parent to Advocate

SWIFT Unscripted is our monthly podcast, and makes for a great listen while waiting in the school pickup line, during a morning walk, or while running errands! SWIFT Unscripted welcomes guests from our SWIFT community, and the latest podcast—"Journey from Parent to Advocate"—features Barb Buswell, SWIFT advisor and director of the PEAK Parent Center. Her thoughtful, amusing stories and perspectives on All Means All inspire families, schools, and communities to work together to achieve equity-based inclusive education.

You can listen on SoundCloudiTunes, or visit the SWIFT Unscripted page to download the podcast to your computer.  A transcript link for each SWIFT Unscripted podcast is available at the end of its description. 

 SWIFT Center contains many resources in English and Spanish to promote All Means All and can be found here:

SWIFT is a national K-8 technical assistance center that builds school capacity to provide academic and behavioral support to improve outcomes for all students through equity-based inclusion http://www.swiftschools.org/ 

The SWIFT Center produced this document under U.S. Department of Education, Office of Special Education Programs Grant No. H326Y120005. OSEP Project Officers Grace Zamora Durán and Tina Diamond served as the project officers. The views expressed herein do not necessarily represent the positions or policies of the Department of Education. No official endorsement by the U.S. Department of Education of any product, commodity, service or enterprise mentioned in this publication is intended or should be inferred. This product is public domain. Authorization to reproduce it in whole or in part is granted. While permission to reprint this publication is not necessary, the citation should be: SWIFT Center. (2017). SWIFT Family & Community, Issue 1, January 2017. Lawrence, KS: SWIFT Center.

 SWIFT Center
1315 Wakarusa Drive,
Lawrence, KS 66049