Whether you are a parent of a child in school for the first time, or a seasoned “pro” in the system, meeting and working with teachers can often cause feelings of stress and uncertainty. It may help to know that, quite often, many teachers feel the same way about meeting and working with parents!
A key point to remember is that you are a partner in your child’s education. The teacher needs—and wants—you to help make your child’s year great!
Tips for a successful partnership:
- Tell your child that you are working with the teacher—you are a partner—to help them have a great school year; show your child this by being actively engaged.
- Share information, observations and perspectives about your child and family at meetings and throughout the year.
- Discuss ways to openly communicate (in person, phone, text, email, student agendas, etc.) on a regular basis.
- Decide how you will inform the teacher about situations, circumstances and events that may change how your child behaves or learns.
- Express concerns directly to the involved individuals only, and always in a respectful manner, seeking a reasonable solution.
- Listen carefully to concerns and comments from your child or the teacher; ask questions until you completely understand the issues and expectations.
- Be positive about your child’s teacher, school and learning—especially in front of your child!
- Use your school council to learn more about the education team at your child’s school, and how all parents can contribute to the success of all students.
As a parent, you have the right and responsibility to make informed decisions about the education of your child. Working closely as a partner with your child’s teacher and the whole school community will go a long way in helping you to do this.
For more information about being actively engaged in your child’s learning, talk to your child’s teacher, principal, or school council chair or contact the Alberta School Councils’ Association.