Introduce yourself to your child’s teachers, the principal, and other school staff. An open house or other “back-to-school” event is a great time to start. Simply saying, “Hi, I’m Jamie’s mom. I’m looking forward to working with you this year,” can set a positive tone.
It’s important to know the appropriate time to talk with staff. Whenever students are present, school staff are focused on students and do not usually have time to talk to parents for more than a few minutes. If a personal meeting is desired, you should schedule it with the teacher. If you are communicating by phone, please keep in mind that teachers usually do not have time to check voicemail or email when they have students in their class. If you have an urgent need, call the school’s office and ask the school secretary to write down your message and have it delivered directly to the teacher.
Find out the best method for communicating with school staff. Some staff prefer phone calls while others will respond best to email or written notes. Important information should be communicated in writing if possible.
If you use email to communicate, try to keep it brief and factual. If you want to share your feelings, talk to the person directly or on the phone.
Provide the school with the best times and methods to communicate with you. Update contact information, such as your home or cell phone number, whenever there is a change. Respond as quickly as possible when someone contacts you.
Check your child’s backpack daily for notes, newsletters, or other communications from the school.
Find out how to use the school websites and check them regularly for information.
The beginning of the school year is a good time to find out when Parent Teacher Conferences will take place and the format.
If English is a second language for you, ask for information to be provided in your primary language.