Parent-Teacher Conference Tips

At BCD, we believe that Parent- Teacher Conferences are essential to educational achievement. Remember, you and the teacher are a team—working in a partnership together. Here are a few tips to help you be better prepared for parent teacher conferences.

  • Plan to discuss the “whole child”.  Your child’s social and emotional development is just as important as academic success.  Include questions about his/her interaction with other children and willingness to participate in class discussions.
  • Prepare questions in advance. What groups has my child been assigned to?  Is my child finishing the work assigned in class?  Is my child working up to his/her ability? The most important question of all is, How can I help my child at home?
  • Let the teacher know in advance if there is a particular topic you want to discuss.  If you want to talk about your child’s progress in a certain subject area be sure to inform the teacher so she can have all the data- test scores, work samples and other materials on hand to support your discussion.
  • Be specific.  Bring any work examples with you that is of concern or a celebration.  Describe clearly any situations in the classroom that your child finds challenging or engaging.  Dialogue with the teacher about your child’s strengths and weaknesses. 
  • Maintain a positive attitude. Hearing shortcomings is never easy but remember failure is part of the learning process and so try to remain open to feedback.  You and the teacher are a team.  Positive comments such as “How can we solve this problem working together?” will be the first step in coming up with good solutions. 
  • Exchange information.  Let the teacher know about any situation at home that may affect your child’s school work, such as a death in the family, a new baby, or a change in aftercare arrangements.
  • Take notes.  Your conference may result in several actions for both you and the teacher.  Taking notes will help you remember what was discussed and what was agreed upon.
  • Leave with a plan.  The conference should end with a clear statement of what you will do and what the teacher will do.  Schedule follow-up meetings or telephone calls to be sure the plan is working.

“Parents are the best resource for a child to make the grade,” said former NEA President Dennis Van Roekel. “When teachers and parents work together, we can help a child have a successful school year.”

Parents, we thank you for your partnership with us. Happy Conferencing!

Jill Johnson, Head of Elementary

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