What To Do At Your Child's Parent Teacher Conference
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4. Look at long-range implications.
What is the “cost” of the current problem in terms what is happening now and how it will manifest in the future? What would happen if nothing were done to address this problem? If there is no significant downside, perhaps no action should be taken at all.
5. Develop a unified plan.
In establishing an action plan to address the problem, suggest that every person at the conference have a specific part in the plan (at least one action item) and is willing to be accountable for it.
6. Set a time to conference again.
The last thing everyone needs is another meeting, but this step is critical. A subsequent meeting should be held a few weeks later in order to assess the effectiveness of the interventions used, each person’s part in those interventions, and what changes should be made, if any.
7. Follow up with a written acknowledgment.
Send a simple “Thank You” note or card to the teacher or school, thanking them for their time and input. This one step alone positions a parent very positively because so few parents ever think to do it.
Although a nationally recognized child and adolescent psychologist, author, and speaker, Dr. James Sutton deeply values his first calling as a public school teacher. Today he is in demand for his expertise on emotionally and behaviorally troubled youngsters, and his skill for sharing it. Dr. Sutton is the founder and host of The Changing Behavior Network, a popular internet radio program supporting young people and their families, and every month he publishes The Changing Behavior Digest, offering tips on managing difficult children and teens. Both resources (and others) are available at no cost through his website, DocSpeak.com.