Per RCW 28A.300.520, it is the state's goal of facilitating normal child development, including maintaining adequate academic progress, while reducing intergenerational incarceration. Programs that engage families in supporting their children's learning are linked to improved student achievement. Teachers advise that students typically perform better with their parent involved, even if their parent is incarcerated.
School tele-conferences provide a unique opportunity for incarcerated parents to engage with their children, meet their child's teachers, and offer support to the children's caregiver. Students perceive the incarcerated parent, caretaker, and school to be working together, as a team, in their best interest.
Inmates desiring to participate in parent/teacher teleconferences must meet the following criteria:
- The child participating in the conference must be a documented son(s), daughter(s), foster or stepchild.
- There must not be any no-contact orders in place for participating conference attendees. This extends to children, caregivers and other individuals involved in the conference.
- Caregiver/guardian approval.
Two teleconference opportunities are available during the school year, one in the fall and one in the spring. These are available only to those meeting the established behavior criteria, and only for school age youth.