“Why teacher conferences at the high school level?”
Parent-teacher conferences can be as helpful in high school as they were in grade school. They put parents in touch with their teen’s world away from home and help parents to establish a relationship with their children’s teachers. Here are some suggestions to parents for making these meetings more effective:
- Find out what your high schooler will be expected to do in each class (homework policy, tests, group projects, etc.) All teachers have a syllabus for their course. Be sure to ask your student to see them.
- Ask how to get in touch with teachers if you have questions. Check the website for teachers' email addresses to make communication easier.
- Make contact early in the grading period so that you will know early if students need help or if they are not performing up to your standards and expectations.
- Make it a priority that you inquire about their grades; don’t wait for the teacher to call you. Check STI Home to obtain your child's grades and attendance records.
- Know when grading periods end. For example, all RHS students receive a 4 1/2 week grade report in the middle of each nine week grading period (called a quarter) and a report card at the end of each nine week interval. All students take mid-term exams at the end of the first nine weeks during each semester. If you need to, check the system’s website for the school year calendar and mark weeks when your student should be bringing home grade reports or a report card. Check STI Home on a regular basis.
- If your student says he never has homework, seldom brings home a book, or you never see him studying, chances are you need to speak with his/her teachers.
- Mention to the teachers any problems at home that may affect your teen’s learning—divorce, illness, etc.
- Discuss questions you may have about such topics as your high schooler’s attitude in class or the friends he/she hangs around with.
- Don’t wait till the semester is nearly over to show concern or to get involved—it may be too late.