02 November, 2009

Communicating with your Child's School

By C. Radhakrishnan

1. Give positive feedback and show appreciation for teachers and the principal.

2. Approach interactions with school administration and staff with a positive attitude and an open mind.

3. Listen to others' viewpoints when having a discussion.

4. Share your child's strengths, talents, and interests with teachers.

5. Share expectations and set goals for your child with his or her teacher.

6. Make appointments as needed to discuss your child's progress or concerns.

7. Attend parent-teacher conferences with specific questions you want to ask.

8. Decide with your child's teacher the best way to stay in touch (phone, e-mail, notes, etc.).

9. Understand and reinforce school rules and expectations at home.

10. Participate in informal opportunities to talk with and get to know school administrators, teachers, and other staff.

11. Address concerns or questions honestly, openly, and early on.

12. Attend PTA or parent meetings regularly.

13. Read classroom and/or school newsletters.

14. Visit your school's Web page.

15. Know the names of your child's teacher(s), school principal, and school doctor/nurse.

16. Read and know your school's handbook.

17. Request that information be available in all languages spoken by school families.

18. Share your family's practices related to culture, values, and parenting with your child's school.

19. Communicate your perceptions of how parents are treated and,when necessary,work with school staff to improve perceptions and school climate.

20. Notify teachers of any significant changes that have taken place in a child's life (such as death of a pet, family move, loss of income, family member's illness, or divorce).

20. Any other information you feel important in relation to your child.