I am not an educator by training. I am a journalist who ended up working in family engagement for my local school district for more than a decade. I realized right away that schools have it tough when it comes to communicating with families. So, I took what I know about education and combined it with what I know about words, tone, and information, and literally wrote the book on school-home communication. Now I partner with school districts across the country to improve family and community engagement using clear, effective, and meaningful communication.
What we say matters.
How we say it matters, too.
Using the right words, tone, and information to bridge the gap between schools and families.
You want what’s best for students.
But communicating with parents and families is hard.
Hi, I'm Patricia.
and here's my book...
Closing the Loop will help you recognize and translate words and ideas into communications that will allow you to form rich relationships with parents and caregivers. Closing the Loop is short, easy to read and full of examples, tips, and checklists that can help you use the right words, information, tone, and body language as you reach out to parents and caregivers.
It’s amazing what the right words can do.
Whether your students are learning from home or headed back to school, anxiety levels and frustrations are at an all-time high. What you say — and how you say it — could mean the difference between a teacher or a family leaving your school or district or deciding to stay.
Sign your team up for one of my interactive trainings (on-site or virtual) today and get:
Custom workshops for schools or districts
With practical lessons and hands-on activities
Focused on clear, simple, effective communication
Learn how to:
Overcome language barriers
Inspire parent & teacher confidence
Set and achieve your goals
Speaking of words...
What educators are saying.
Effectively communicating with families and creating pathways for meaningful two-way communication is absolutely necessary if we wish to engage them in the learning lives of their children. Much of the inbound communication from families to schools centers on questions and concerns, often responses to school communication that is confusing, misinterpreted and/or misunderstood. To improve spoken and written communication with families and to set the stage for real and meaningful engagement, understanding how, when, where, and why to communicate is absolutely essential. In Closing the Loop, A Powerful and Practical Guide to School Home Communication, communications expert Patricia Weinzapfel, a trusted and authoritative voice in the field of communication, shares a proven pathway to inspire effective communication with every family and provides multiple opportunities to reflect, examine and improve present practice. I have not seen a better or more compelling resource for educators looking to elevate communication and ultimately the engagement of every family.Dr. Steve ConstantinoNationally Recognized Family Engagement Expert and Best-Selling Author Executive Professor, William and Mary School of Education
Patricia Weinzapfel delivered powerful content empowering family facing professionals to refine their communication skills and positively engage families in education. She shared real examples of best communication practices that gave participants the opportunity to problem- solve and apply the content immediately!Maria Ovalle-LopezDirector Family Engagement, Klein ISD
"Patricia is a true passionate advocate for students and families. She strongly advocates for family engagement ensuring families are always on our minds and considered when new initiatives are developed and implemented. She supported the collaborative prevention and intervention work of school counselors with other students support service providers. The contributions to family engagement and the strategies she shared have been helpful to us when consulting with other districts. Her impact in Evansville supported great improvement in family engagement."Trish Hatch, PhDBest-selling Author, White House Advisor, DOE Consultant
Patricia's work will enhance your overall communication skills. In our District, our goal is to build trust, foster collaboration, and ensure that our messages are clearly understood. Patricia's master class and year-long coaching with our administrators and staff is leading us even closer to accomplishing this goal. We use Patricia's tips and tools to communicate with families, as well as internally with staff. I even find myself remembering her advice in conversations with friends and family. For me, her work is not only professional development, but personal development. That combination is hard to find.Charlene PaparizosDirector of Communications, Chagrin Falls Schools
Don’t let the wrong words come between your schools and your families.
And learn how simple, effective communication can help your school district.