At my child’s parent/teacher interview at school, I received some information that I wasn’t expecting.  How can I be an effective advocate for my child during the next parent/teacher interview?

As a parent and foster parent myself, I understand how it can be surprising to hear information about your child that you were not expecting at a parent/teacher meeting.

Moving forward, here are a few ideas for working with the teacher to effectively help your child.

First, always be honest and open with the teacher. You want the teacher to know that you are there to support them, and that you want to work together as a team in the best interest of your child.

Second, ask for another meeting to discuss the issue in more detail and to make a communication plan that works for you and the teacher.  I ask teachers to contact me immediately regarding any issue with my child, no matter how small, and not to wait for a conference to share things with me.  Depending on the severity of the information you received, you can also set up two to three scheduled meetings throughout the year.

At these meetings, you can introduce your child on a personal level.  Share some things that your child is doing really well, any challenges or new things happening at home.  I share strategies with the teacher to effectively work with my child on this issue and ask them to use the same methods at school.  This consistency can be very positive for a child.

So, in a nutshell:  honesty, teamwork, ongoing communication and consistency.

– Marla, Foster Parent for Closer to Home

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jmelnychuk@closertohome.com and it may be featured in our next newsletter!