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Funding for the PIRC program as a whole has been discontinued by the US Department of Education. Therefore, most PIRC programs are no longer in operation although several are continuing with funding from other sources. You may contact PIRCs directly to determine their status.
Massachusetts State PIRC
Boston, MA
1135 Tremont Street, Suite 420
Boston, MA 02120

Web site: http://www.pplace.org
Hours: 9 am - 5 pm, Monday - Friday
  Director:
Ms. Margaret C. O'Hare

Phone: 617-399-8344
Fax: 617-572-2094

Evaluator: Kate Gill Kressley
Evaluator affiliation: RMC Research Corporation

Logo for Massachusetts State PIRC

State PIRC Board:

Roxanne Chandler-Hoke, parent
Pilar Godoy, parent
Tracy Collins, parent
Janis McManus, Title I Specialist, MA DOE
Stuart Peskin, Director, Title I Dissemination Project, Inc.
Wendy Grolnik, Massachusetts Board of Education Parent and Community Education and Involvement Advisory Group, Clark University
Katherine Sullivan, Family Network Coordinator
Michelle Tremont, President, Massachusetts PTA
Kim Hunt, President-Elect, Massachusetts PTA
Gail DeRiggi, Department of Early Education and Care
William Henderson, Principal, Boston Public Schools
Danielle Gantt, Black Ministerial Alliance
Jenny Cintron, Director, ABCD Boston Hispanic Center
Melissa Colon, Gaston Institute
Stanley Pollack, Executive Director, Center for Teen Empowerment.

Special Advisory Committees:

Massachusetts Statewide Board of Advisors will create working Advisory Committees on an as-needed basis. Members will be solicited statewide and consist of stakeholders, such as parents, educators, school administrators, community organization representatives, state agency representatives, higher education researchers, and students. The Advisory Committees are:

  • Steering Committee: provide leadership and guidance for the Statewide Board of Advisors and Massachusetts PIRC
  • Regional Advisory Committees: address issues specific to regions of the state
  • Ad Hoc Advisory Committees: focus on specific relevant issues on a temporary and statewide basis


The purpose of the Massachusetts State PIRC is to enhance the capacities of parents, families, schools, and school districts to improve children’s school readiness and students’ academic achievement through increased parental participation and through use of NCLB provisions and options. The goals are:

  1. To establish, expand, and enhance the operation of early childhood parent education programs using the research-proven Parents As Teachers (PAT) model to further the developmental progress and enhance the school-readiness of children ages birth through 5 in economically and educationally disadvantaged families.
  2. To implement broad statewide strategies to enhance the ability of Massachusetts parents, including economically and educationally disadvantaged families, to participate in their children’s education and communicate effectively with their children’s schools.
  3. To increase parents’ understanding of and ability to access NCLB provisions related to School Report Cards and opportunities for Public School Choice and Supplemental Educational Services.
  4. To assist Local Educational Agencies (LEAs) in the development and implementation of School Parental Involvement Policies (under Title I) through the provision of technical assistance to schools, districts, and parent leaders to support improved student achievement and school performance.
Parental Engagement Model
Activities for parents of school-age children are guided by Joyce Epstein’s research, Section 1118 of NCLB, the National PTA standards for parental involvement, and best practices as they emerge in research literature.

Early Childhood Model
Early childhood efforts are based on supporting and enhancing early childhood parent education programs in Massachusetts which use the Parents As Teachers model.

Major Activities
  1. Providing resources and ongoing technical assistance to Parents AsTeachers programs and increasing networking among other early childhood parent education programs;
  2. developing reader-friendly publications for parents on research-based strategies for helping their children gain school-readiness skills and be successful in school;
  3. developing reader-friendly publications for parents and educators on key NCLB provisions (all publications are in English, Spanish, and Portuguese);
  4. conducting outreach efforts to community-based and faith-based organizations to provide information and resources to families about education;
  5. conducting workshops statewide on NCLB and parental involvement (English, Spanish, and Portuguese);
  6. providing intensive technical assistance on NCLB, Title I, Section 1118, to 6 targeted districts across the state, and working with the state DOE on technical assistance and professional development opportunities;
  7. providing individual assistance via telephone information line;
  8. providing online information and resources through trilingual Website www.pplace.org.

How the Work Plan Meets the Needs of Parents
All information and resources disseminated by Massachusetts PIRC are specially designed to address family concerns in a format and in languages families understand. Massachusetts PIRC works with community-based and faith-based organizations to disseminate this information and support families around educational issues and works with schools and districts to make schools places where parents’ participation is welcome.

Alignment of Work to Statewide PIRC Efforts
Massachusetts PIRC has based its goals and activities on a program design that calls for a statewide, comprehensive set of research-based approaches that address the need for a continuum of information, training, and technical assistance aimed at enhancing parental involvement. All resources are targeted to districts with the highest needs as determined by the number of schools identified for improvement, the greatest percentages of minority and limited-English proficient students and of those living in poverty.

Unique Characteristics
Massachusetts PIRC has partnership agreements with premiere state and national education, professional, and advocacy organizations, all committed to advancing student achievement through supporting effective parental involvement.

Free Webinar Series
The U.S. Department of Education and its partners invite you to view the archive for the webinar, Bringing it All Together: Family and Community Engagement Policies in Action, which took place on November 16, 2011.

This is the ninth and final webinar in the series, Achieving Excellence and Innovation in Family, School, and Community Engagement.
United States Department of Education Funding for this project is provided by the U.S. Department of Education, contract number ED-04-CO-0039/0001. The content herein does not necessarily reflect the views of the U.S. Department of Education.
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