Cox partners with Livingtree to enhance family engagement in NNPS


Posted: August 13, 2019

Cox announced a partnership on August 13, 2019 with Newport News Public Schools and Livingtree, Inc. to bring families closer to their child's learning experiences at school. Through a pilot program this school year Cox will power the Livingtree family engagement app for Newport News teachers, administrators, parents, and caregivers.

"Family engagement is crucial to student success. Thanks to our new partnership with Cox, we will create stronger connections with our families through the Livingtree app," said Dr. George Parker, III, superintendent of Newport News Public Schools. "This joint venture will establish a culture of collaboration and achievement."

"Cox is committed to helping our local communities particularly when it comes to positioning kids for bright futures. We believe the Livingtree app is a powerful tool to bring teachers, parents and kids closer which will result in better student outcomes," said J.D. Myers, Cox Senior Vice President & Region Manager.

Backed by research, industry experts and proven methods, the Livingtree Engage platform is a private, safe, and secure community for teachers and families to work together more collaboratively. Through easy-to-use social features available on web browsers and mobile devices, Livingtree connects educators and families in a two-way communication platform.

Dr. Steve Constantino, national expert in family engagement and Senior Vice President for Livingtree shares, "We know that family engagement is a direct conduit to improved learning, so how can parents easily make an impact? Families are more overwhelmed today than they've ever been. Livingtree is an easy way to connect with kids on a meaningful level and go way beyond the typical question parents often ask, "how was your day?"

This public-private partnership is an extension of Cox's commitment to close the digital divide. Since 2012, through the Connect2Compete program (C2C), Cox has provided discounted internet service to families with children who qualify for the National Free School Lunch program. To date, more than 500,000 people have been connected to the internet via the Connect2Compete program. In a 2018 C2C customer survey, 61% of customers shared they never had internet before. Respondents also believe C2C improves parent and teacher communication (95%), boosts graduation rates (91%), and helps students earn higher grades (89%).

As a part of the pilot, Livingtree will also provide capacity-building professional development for teachers to learn the necessary skills in family engagement strategies and then how to apply those strategies to technology. Additionally, family responses to teacher engagement posts are then measured through a Livingtree Family Efficacy Score (FES). Displayed for teachers in a simple, easily understood format, the system can also take the FES and compare it to targeted learning outcomes to show how the engagements with families are impacting specific learning.

School Board Chairman Gary Hunter; Ebonee Younger Product Manager, Connect2Compete;  Gary Hensley, CEO & President, Livingtree; Nneka Chiazor, Vice President of Public and Government Affairs for the Virginia Region, Cox; Superintendent Dr. George Parker, III.
School Board Chairman Gary Hunter; Ebonee Younger Product Manager, Connect2Compete; Gary Hensley, CEO & President, Livingtree; Nneka Chiazor, Vice President of Public and Government Affairs for the Virginia Region, Cox; Superintendent Dr. George Parker, III.