I recommend that families of elementary school students create a family email or GMail. Since we're a school system that uses Google apps, I recommend a GMail account. It's very helpful for families to have one email that all family members share since it becomes a good teaching ground for young children as they learn to use email and other sites that require an email.
I suggest creating the email with an easy-to-remember family name and password. I suggest sharing this email with organizations that your whole family participates in such as school and the local library. As students become older, I recommend that parents begin to encourage their children to communicate with teachers and others via the family email with parent oversight. Again, this is a good way to teach children how to use technology. I also suggest that parents recommend that their children check the email regularly and read messages that relate to them. Since it's a family email, parents can oversee this use.
I have found that the family email is very helpful right up and through the college process. If parents and students are receiving important information that relates to your children, then you can discuss and make decisions about that information together.
Of course, in time, your child will be ready for his/her own email accounts, but hopefully by that time, your child will know well how to navigate the world of digital communication and share.