Connecting with Parents – By Lee Vaillant
I make an effort the first month to call all of my new students' parents. Particularly the grade 9 parents. It helps to create a positive line of communication. I introduce myself, ask them if there is anything that they think that I need to know about their child to help them be successful, and how their child is feeling about the transition to high school. Do they feel safe and welcome at our school? I ask if there are any clubs they might be interested in joining outside of the classroom and I try and encourage the students to follow through and join. I also warn the students that I will be calling and that it is a positive phone call. I explain to them how important communication is between parents and teachers. I find that especially with challenging classes, having a positive first phone call makes a huge difference if and when you need to call later, because the parents know that you care. Also, parents have expressed to me that compared to elementary school, they feel very much in the dark when it comes to what is happening in high school and this can be dangerous for some students who may begin to make poor choices. Parents are so appreciative that I have taken the time to connect.