Does your school hold parent conferences?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by MelissainGA, Jul 21, 2010.

  1. MelissainGA

    MelissainGA Groupie

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    Jul 21, 2010

    Our board cut parent conferences in the fall and the spring from our calendar. Instead we are doing progress reports to send home 1/2 way between each grading period.

    I feel the parent conferences we held were really beneficial since the parents were able to see face to face where their child was and see/hear examples of what needed to be worked on. I usually had very high turnout (maybe one or two parents wouldn't come and I had already held a conference at another time with them).

    I am worried that parents won't be as inclined to work at home as they were after the previous speech/visual cues they have received in the past.
     
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  3. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Why on earth would they cut conferences?

    I can't imagine that they cost a whole lot to run... why the change in policy??
     
  4. Rachael84

    Rachael84 Rookie

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    We have them in the fall and then the spring. I feel like it's pointless to have them at the end of the year, because there are always a couple students who are definitely not moving to the next grade at that point in the year, and not much can usually change it. They should have the conferences early (end of Sept) and then in Feb or something.

    As far as progress reports, every school in the district does it differently, but generally they get sent every couple months.
     
  5. teachgrade5

    teachgrade5 Comrade

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    Our school board didn't cut parent teacher conferences, but our state decided that we couldn't use days for parent teacher conferences the way we were. We use to have two days where the kdis would leave at 10:15 and we would have conference all day until 8:00 that night. The next day we would have conferences from 10:15-12:00. We worked it out though last year. They allowed us to have parent teacher conferences from 1:00 to 3:15. We had to do the conferences all week. I don't know how we are going to do this school year. I just know that at first they told us no conferences, but the elementary schools really wanted to keep the pt conferences. Can your school be creative to keep the conferences without costing the school board money?
     
  6. MelissainGA

    MelissainGA Groupie

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    Jul 21, 2010

    Alice,

    They were looking for any way to cut at that point. The way we ran conferences were we would have classes until noon and then they would send the kids home and one day we would hold conferences from 3:30 - 7:30 and the other we would hold from 12:30 until 3:30. I don't know the logic behind deciding not to hold them but I really was hoping they would give us the September conferences (this was the conference I gave the parents all the testing information for the spring to work on and showed them samples of materials to use with their kids. I am worried that w/o the visual that some of the parents won't take it seriously.

    Rachael- ours were September (after the first month) and in February (about 8 weeks before State testing - for the serious unless this and this happens your child might not go to 4th grade talk)
     
  7. KinderCowgirl

    KinderCowgirl Phenom

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    Jul 21, 2010

    That doesn't make sense to me either, but now that I think about it, I don't know how we'll do it this year. In the past we had one early release day per week-Weds the kids would get out at 1:00. Those days were usually for pd but 3 times per year we'd invite parents to come pick up report cards and conference with us on that day.

    Could you do like a parent meeting with all your parents after school one day and go over testing materials? I know it's not the same as meeting individually and discussing progress.
     
  8. teach1st

    teach1st Comrade

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    We parent conferences in October and March. After first and third quarter. We have conferences from 1-6. Kids leave a 11:30 and then we have the next day off since we stay late. I don't think our district would ever get rid of them. We have a good turn out and your right it keeps the parents involved.
     
  9. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Jul 21, 2010

    High school:

    We have parent conferences after the 1st and 2nd progress reports, and after 1st and 2nd report cards.

    All our conferences are from 7-9 pm after a full day of school, and there is a full day of school the next day.
     
  10. mom2mikey

    mom2mikey Cohort

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    Our conferences are held after school twice a year. We do not take school time off for them when the conferences happen. When we moved to this model, we did get 2 extra days "in-lieu" during our February break as we used to have a holiday Monday the third week followed by Teacher's Convention the Thursday and Friday the same week. The school board gave us the Tuesday and Wednesday off and then expects us to put that time back in after school when we do parent-teacher interviews in October and March. We just go one day after school from 3:30-8:00 and the other from 3:30-5:30 and make up the 6.5 hour day that we get off later.
     
  11. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    I'm wondering if it's a budget issue. Kind of depends on how the district schedules conferences. In the fall, we do conferences on one evening (6-8), all day on election day and mornings by appointment. In the spring, we have a rotating schedule- 3 teachers per grade level teach 1/2 day, a sub comes and the teacher has conferences for the rest of the day. Plus, we'll again schedule some morning conferences as needed. It's the sub cost for my district that gets prohibitive. Subs are paid about $80 per day, multiplied by the number of staff we have (we have about 5 or 6 sections per grade level:dizzy:). We would never cut out conferences though- the election day and night conferences save big $$ since the kids are off for election day and we are contracted for the one evening conference date.
     
  12. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    So it needs to be re-structured, not eliminated!!

    Preaching to the choir here, I know!
     
  13. silver rain

    silver rain Comrade

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    We are required to have a fall and a spring conference for each student. We are required to provide documentation (such as a parent's signature on our conference note taking form.) In addition, we send home progress reports as well. Conferences are scheduled on our own time. We have never dismissed school early for anything other than a hurricane. :D We do try to schedule conferences during our conference time (planning time) during the day, but you all know those times are eaten up by meetings with admin and training.
     
    Last edited: Jul 21, 2010
  14. JaimeMarie

    JaimeMarie Moderator

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    We have parent teacher conferences twice a year and send progress reports on three times a year. We grade by trimester.
     
  15. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    A conference should never be POINTLESS. One shouldn't wait until a conference to inform parents of how their students are doing in school. It's proactive and professional to maintain an ongoing home to school connection with families, keep them apprised of student progress academically and socially-the information shared at a conference should NEVER come as a surprise to a family:2cents:. Even if a child is being retained, parents and school should have been working to support that child throughout the year and an end of year conference could be used to reassure the family of the next year's plan for their child's success.
     
  16. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    We have formal conferences near the end of November, to coincide with our first report cards. They are scheduled beginning immediately after school on a Thursday, until 9:00pm or so, and then the morning of the next day, which is a day off for the students. Being able to offer this variety of times is essential so that we can get the greatest parent turn-out; many of our parents work at jobs where taking time off or reorganizing their work schedule just isn't possible. We are encouraged to schedule parent conferences throughout the year, and these are held on our time.
     
  17. 3Sons

    3Sons Connoisseur

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    Jul 21, 2010

    For a parent, the end of the school year is not an end -- the parent still has the child, even if the teacher does not.

    I would add more, but frankly czacza's post is pitch-perfect on this.
     

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