As a working parent, you may have already attended many parent teacher conferences. These are the usual meetings between parents and teachers, during which your child’s performance and needs are discussed. As a matter of fact, parental involvement is deemed to be a strong predictor of student academic success.
This is a great opportunity for both parents and teachers to meet each other, connect and determine how the students are doing as well as the best ways to help them excel. In order to make the best of this opportunity, here are 10 questions you should ask at your next parent teacher conference:
1. How is my child doing academically and socially?
It’s important to get an honest and clear assessment of your child’s performance by the teacher. This will help you clarify any concerns you may have, and understand where your child stands academically and socially.
2. What do you consider to be his/her strengths?
Your child’s teacher spends a considerable amount of time with him/her. As such, they may be in the best position to assess their academic strengths. You should rely on their assessment to understand and help your child as best as you can.
3. What do you think are my child’s academic challenges?
Just as you may want to know about your child’s strengths, you may also get a solid understanding of the academic and social challenges they may face. This will also help put you in a better position to help him/her.
4. Is my child on grade level for math, reading, science, and writing?
Your child’s teacher should be able to honestly assess where your child stands, as compared to their grade level requirements. This will allow you to also determine whether extra help is needed to help your child reach the required level in their grade.
5. How will my child be prepared for standardized tests?
One of the biggest concerns of parents is whether or not their children are prepared for standardized tests. Many of these tests determine the types of colleges, financial aid or scholarship that students are eligible for.
6. What is your policy as related to homework?
Homework is an important part of your child’s academic success. Understanding the homework policy and what is expected in this regard can make a difference in how well the student performs academically.
7. What can I do at home to help support my child?
Parents play a crucial role in their children’s academic success. Knowing how best you can affect your child’s academic career at home can help him/her reach their milestones easier and faster.
8. If my child were struggling in his/her studies, how would you be able to help?
It’s one thing to assist students when they’re doing well. However, being able to offer extra support when they’re struggling can go a long way towards equipping them for long-term academic success. Asking this question will not only give you peace of mind, but also help you gain more trust in the teacher.
9. What’s in place to help my child strive socially?
Social growth is also a determining part of your child’s ultimate success. As such, you may want to inquire about systems in place to help students develop socially as well.
10. What’s the best way to communicate with you? (email, phone, texts, notes, etc
Keeping in touch with your child’s teacher is necessary to stay abreast of his/her progress, and also participate in the academic process. Inquire about the best ways to keep the communication lines open with the school and teacher.
Want to learn more? Read How to Get the Most Out of Parent Teacher Conference. You can also get more tips HERE.
What other questions would you add to this list?
Solange Lopes is an author and the founder The Corporate Sister blog (www.thecorporatesister.com), where she shares career, business and lifestyle advice for working women.