PARENTS: ADVERSARY OR ALLY? A Cooperative Approach


[semester equivalent = 2.00 credits]



Michael Sedler



A cooperative approach to working with families is of the utmost importance to educators.  Depending upon the approach, the parent(s) can be a tremendous support or an actual stumbling block to education within the school. This class will explore positive ways to enlist the support of even the most "distant" parent. Utilization of home visitation strategies, parent groups, conferences, phone calls and notes will be examined. Specific communication strategies will be explained which are geared to enable educators in facilitating a cooperative atmosphere with parents.  At the completion of this course, each person will have a multitude of ideas to use immediately in the school and classroom.


LEARNING OUTCOMES: Upon completion of this course, participants will have:

  1. Listed stresses and reasons concerning non-involved parents.
  2. Assessed family styles and stated effective strategies in communication for each one.
  3. Accurately listed the steps for home visitations, including follow-up strategies.
  4. Developed an action plan for a family and implemented it during the school year.
  5. Mediated a family conference from beginning to end and then analyzed key components.
  6. Described various ways to gain parental support within a week of implementation.

Completion of all specified assignments is required for issuance of hours or credit.  The Heritage Institute does not award partial credit. 


Completing the basic assignments (Section A. Information Acquisition) for this course automatically earns participant’s their choice of CEUs (Continuing Education Units), or Washington State Clock Hours or Oregon PDUs. The Heritage Institute offers CEUs and is an approved provider of Washington State Clock Hours and Oregon PDUs.



Continuing Education Quarter credits are awarded by Antioch University Seattle (AUS). AUS requires 75% or better for credit at the 400 level and 85% or better to issue credit at the 500 level. These criteria refer both to the amount and quality of work submitted.

  1. Completion of Information Acquisition assignments 30%
  2. Completion of Learning Application assignments 40%
  3. Completion of Integration Paper assignment 30%


CREDIT/NO CREDIT (No Letter Grades or Numeric Equivalents on Transcripts)
Antioch University Seattle (AUS) Continuing Education Quarter credit is offered on a Credit/No Credit basis; neither letter grades nor numeric equivalents are on a transcript. 400 level credit is equal to a "C" or better, 500 level credit is equal to a "B" or better. This information is on the back of the transcript.

AUS Continuing Education quarter credits may or may not be accepted into degree programs. Prior to registering determine with your district personnel, department head or state education office the acceptability of these credits for your purpose.



Chosen text from Bibliography plus all handout materials, case study, and samples.
Text may be purchased directly from publishing companies.
List of all companies and phone numbers are located in the back of the student manual.

None. All reading is online.


Once you register, log onto the instructorʼs website at Click on Classes, then scroll down and click on Parents: Adversary or Ally? manual. The manual will download as a PDF file to your computer.


Mike Sedler, D.Min., M.S.W. brings over 30 years of educational experience as an administrator, social worker, behavior specialist and teacher to each of his classes.  

He provides consultation services and seminars throughout the United States and Canada for schools, agencies and businesses.  He has been teaching “adult learning classes” since the mid 1980’s and has had the privilege of working for The Heritage Institute for over 25 years. 

He has a graduate degree in Social Work, a Doctoral degree in Ministry, a Counseling license, as well as his teaching certification (K-8).  His combination of classroom experience, behavior intervention approaches, and involvement in working with hundreds of families allows for an excellent blend in all his classes.

Mike is passionate about children and emphasizes the importance of avoiding power struggles, offering options/choices to children, setting clear boundaries and guidelines as well as finding a place of positive engagement and connection with each individual.  His heart for people and emphasis on positive communication are found throughout his seminars and classes.

All of Mike’s classes are practical and “field tested” in schools and classrooms. Educators have found ongoing success in implementing Mike’s clear and concise approaches.


PARENTS: ADVERSARY OR ALLY? A Cooperative Approach


Akabas. Meg and Bernstein, Fred.  52 Weeks Of Parenting Wisdom.  Parenting Solutions Press, 2012.  Once per week lessons to help on a variety of topics (grades P-12.) 

Canter, Lee.  Parents On Your Side.  Solution Tree, 2008.  Assisting teachers to gain parent support (grades K-12.)  800 733 6786.

Cline, Foster, and Fay, Jim. Parenting With Love And Logic. Love and Logic Institute. 2014. New approaches to working with children (grades K - 12.)    800 455 7557.

Criswell, Heather.  How To Raise A Happy Child. Everyday Genius Institute, 2013.  Helps you become stronger in parenting skills with positive approaches  (grades K-8)   415 524 7342.

Hutchins, Darcy and Epstein, Joyce, et al.  Family Reading Night.  Routledge press, 2014.  Guidelines for schools to host family reading nights (grades P-6.)   800 634 7064.

Kastner, Laura and Wyatt, Jennifer. Getting To Calm.  Parent Map, 2009.  Addresses emotional regulation for parents (grades P-12.)   206 709 9026.

Kyle, Diane and McIntyre, Ellen, et al. Bridging School and Home Through Family Nights. Skyhorse Publishing, 2015.  Guide for families to develop family nights (grades K-12.)    212 643 6816.

Le Messurier, Mark. Parenting Tough Kids. Skyhorse Publishing, 2015. Simple proven strategies to help kids succeed (grades K-9.)   212 643 6816.

Lott, Lynn.  Chores Without Wars. Taylor Trade Publishing, 2012. Helping families work together as a team (grades K-12; adult.)  800 462 6420.

Nelsen, Jane, et al. Positive Discipline Series. Empowering People Inc. 2011. Create cooperation and self-discipline in students (grades K - 12, series.)  800 456 7770. 

Payne, Ruby. A Framework For Understanding Poverty. Aha! Process, Inc, 2013. Understanding the link between poverty and learning (grades K -12; adult.)  800 424 9484.

Rudney, Gwen.  Every Teachers Guide To Working With Parents. Corwin Press, 2005. How to partner with parents (grades K-12.)    800 233 9936.

Tingley, Suzanne.  How To Handle Difficult Parents. Prufrock Press, 2012.  A variety of parenting styles explored and solutions to challenging behaviors discussed. (grade P-12)   800 998 2208.