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First Lady Back to School Neighborhood Knocks

Tennessee First Lady's

Back to School Neighborhood Knocks


A Back to School Neighborhood Knock is a school-wide campaign that conducts door-to-door home visitations to the families of each incoming student, to deliver important school information and welcome the student back to school.

A Back to School Neighborhood Knock or home visit is essential to the positive relationship building process between parent, child and school. The home visit is initiated by the school and should convey to the family a sincerity of concern, comfort and willingness to work together to achieve the best results for the student.

A Back to School Neighborhood Knock is held on a Saturday morning.

For example, school administrators, teachers and volunteer walkers meet at their school by 9 a.m. for a quick breakfast and orientation meeting, and then depart from the school to begin their assigned home visits.

A Back to School Neighborhood Knock is held in the local neighborhood of your school. The meetings between the teams and families are held on the door steps of the families visited.

A Back to School Neighborhood Knock is hosted by the school, using two-person (or more) teams consisting of teachers, administrators, support school staff and community member volunteers. It is beneficial to combine teams that include a school representative and a parent or community representative.

The representation for the school (teachers, administrators and support staff) is the most familiar and recognizable to the student and to the family. Parents and community members are familiar with the neighborhoods and are comfortable with the communities in which the visits are taking place.

A Back to School Neighborhood Knock team visits at least 4 homes per team. During the visit, the team should accomplish the following:

  • Establish a positive rapport with the parent/guardian.
  • Share and discuss your school’s parent engagement plan, parent responsibilities and/or school covenant.
  • Encourage parents/guardians to be involved with the school and their child’s education.
  • Have parents/guardians complete a parent survey that will help to identify where and how the school can better address parental concerns for them and their children.

Sample Volunteer Packets

For other helpful materials such as a sample event timeline or volunteer training script, please contact the Office of the First Lady.

"Back to School Neighborhood Knocks" materials were adapted in part from resources provided courtesy of ProjectGRAD Knoxville Walk for Success.

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