Waco, TX (FOX 44) — Central Texas school districts are ramping up their efforts this school year to get parents involved in student academics.

Many people returned to their daily activities and routines post covid, but schools across the nation, including some in Central Texas, are still having to catch up on learning.

Four day school weeks have been made, even raises were created to get more teachers in the classroom, however the districts say they also need parental involvement.

“The challenge we had was how do we get parents reinvigorated or re-immersed into school culture when they’ve been out of it for a little bit of time,” said Belton ISD superintendent Dr. Matt Smith.

Dr. Smith says a new effort they’re making this year is to have parent teacher conferences for all K-12 students.

“We’re going to get something started. We believe bringing a parent into a dialog about their students academic learning is better for the student and better for the school, and so we know that that partnership’s important, we’re going to invest in it,” said Dr. Smith.

Belton has also made its students curriculum and library material available to parents.

This year Academy ISD has moved to a nine week grading period with three week progress reports.

“We hope to see that our teachers feel less rushed and our students feel like they have more time to gain understanding,” said Academy ISD communication director Jacki Wright.

Wright says the change still requires parent involvement.

“Teachers, parents, and students all share the responsibility for improved student academic achievement,” said Wright.

Waco High School principal Sterlin McGruder says they have an online system for parents to check their students grades and know when there’s a progress report.

They’re also reaching out to parents if their students are capable of higher academic challenges.

“We direct our teachers to our content preferences if we’re offering free AP or AP classes, so if a parent of a student is being recommended….we have a lot of students being recommended now, we call parents and let them know about what the AP and the Pre-AP program is,” said McGruder.

Waco High School is also emphasizing tutoring for the ACT, PSAT, and TSIA.