25 February 2013

Parent Teacher Conferences

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Today starts Parent Teacher Conferences in my district and I am a little confused as to how I should feel about such duties. Many of the teachers in my district despise meeting with parents and will only hold their conference times during regular school hours (our district releases the students 2+ hours earlier so teachers can starts their conferences while still within their "contract hours") and won't make any exceptions for parents.  And yet, they act bothered when some parents can't attend because they are working and can't get away. I find that horribly wrong!

Now, I'm not judging, but I find it selfish of the teachers to only offer times when the normal school day is in session  and then get upset because a parent is working to take care of their family. I realize parents need to be involved in their child's education, but shouldn't they also be involved in their child's physical well-being?

I grew up in a household where both of my parents worked and they worked very hard to provide for my brothers and me. They couldn't always attend an S.E.P. Conference during the workday, yet they always found a way to meet with our teachers either before or after school. Because I grew up with that example, I always try to have at least one day where I stay later and allow parents to come in the evening. My view is that I WANT to meet with every parent and I don't care what I have to do in order to meet with EVERY parent. I have been known to hold conferences at 8:00pm or the following week. I know that by making the opportunity for parents to meet with me, they will see my level of dedication to their children as well as my desire to be on their team in regards to their child's education.

How do Parent Teacher Conferences work with you in your district? Are they seen as a nuisance or as a privilege?

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