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This paper examines three projects conducted by researchers from Brazil's Federal University of Sao Carlos and teachers from low-income, public elementary schools. The study investigated an inservice teacher education effort designed to strengthen family-school relationships. The projects were designed to generate knowledge about teachers' professional development processes and collaboratively construct strategies to bring together schools and families. Researchers examined whether adoption of a constructive-collaborative model involving university-school partnerships and based on strengthening family-school relationships would enhance teacher professional education. They analyzed aspects of the learning-to-teach processes, adopted formative strategies, and teacher participation in seeking solutions to problems they identified regarding the local school context. After examining aspects of the teacher knowledge base and its relationship to a better understanding of students and learning, and analyzing ideas about family-school relationships within the Brazilian context, the paper describes study methods and results, highlighting essential elements for promoting teachers' professional development. Overall, parents expressed great interest in the educational process but did not consider themselves participants in the school community (though they wished for more active roles). Teachers felt parents were not interested in participating. They often had biased and incorrect opinions about families. Family-school contact often occurred through students. (Contains 50 references.) (SM)

Descriptors: College School Cooperation, Elementary Education, Family School Relationship, Foreign Countries, Higher Education, Inservice Teacher Education, Low Income Groups, Parent Attitudes, Parent Participation, Partnerships in Education, Teacher Attitudes

Autor: Reali, Aline Maria de Medeiros Rodrigues; Tancredi, Regina Maria Simoes Puccinelli


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