Welcome Letters/Information to Parents

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by Evergreen, Jun 29, 2016.

  1. Evergreen

    Evergreen Rookie

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    Jun 29, 2016

    What information do you provide to parents prior to the school year starting? And what do you ask from them?
    What kind of language do you use in your welcome letters?
    When do you send this information?

    As I am moving private to charter, and am about to take on my first lead teaching position, I am trying to gauge what is normal. I always appreciate and use the feedback on here, so thanks in advance.
     
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  3. cocobean

    cocobean Companion

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    Jun 29, 2016

    This will be my first year teaching and I'm considering putting a flipbook together for meet the teacher night.
    I plan on including: contact info (for myself and the main office), daily schedule, classroom management, homework expectations, tardy/attendance policy and volunteer info ... That's what I have for now.
    My language is friendly and straightforward. I want students and parents to feel comfortable accessing the information in the flipbook.

    I'm curious to see what others do/plan on doing!
     
  4. TnKinder

    TnKinder Companion

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    Jun 29, 2016

    At the start of the year I send home a newsletter that has everything parents need to know. I include information about drop off and pick up, breakfast and lunch times, uniform information, before and after school care info, homework policy, behavioral expectations, standard based grading scale, and info about weekly take home folders. I also include my class phone number and email. The language is pretty straight forward. I want parents to understand the different policies, especially those that deal with grading, behavior, and drop off and pick up.
     
  5. phillyteacher

    phillyteacher Comrade

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    Jun 30, 2016

    As a parent, I would suggest something small with your main contact info and the most important thing you want parents to always have as a reference. Some teachers do cheap magnets from Vista Print or you could just do quarter slips of paper. This is to put on the fridge or similar spot for quick reference.

    Then, personally I would prefer other info on regular paper. A flip book is a nice idea but I have no idea where I would put it for reference. Most of my kids stuff goes into files or binders.
     
  6. phillyteacher

    phillyteacher Comrade

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    Jun 30, 2016

    Now on the teacher side :) I sent home a single page letter at the beginning of the year. I can post an example when I am back at my computer next week. It had a short introduction, my contact info and a very brief overview of what we would be learning over the course of the year. I also sent home a survey to get more info about families and students.
     
  7. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Jun 30, 2016

    The school generally sends a letter regarding school policies. Since this is your first contact with parents and school hasn't started yet, a simple welcome letter expressing your excitement to start the year with students would set a positive tone. In my letter I invite parents to send me an email or letter about their child. I don't get into rules, procedures, etc in a first contact.
     
  8. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    Jun 30, 2016

    They get quite a bit from the school, so I try to limit my information to a quick background of me (their teacher) - professional and a tiny bit personal, a general welcome, my beliefs about parent/teacher/student communication and its importance (which I send a get-to-know-your-child sheet along with, which asks for their e-mail, and some background info), and a quick background on my philosophy as a teacher. Nothing too deep, nothing too vital, but just a quick intro that shows them that I want us to all be a collaborative team throughout the year.

    The language is professional, but also warm, welcoming, and somewhat humorous, as I want to show that we're beginning an important relationship that will be carried through the year.

    We have a meet and greet day about 4 days before school begins, so the parents get this letter then or on the first day when their kid brings it home. We also have curriculum night, where I share the bulk of the information (really, the nitty gritty and curriculum details as opposed to just a welcome), which happens a week or two into the year.
     
  9. RainStorm

    RainStorm Aficionado

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    Jun 30, 2016

    I agree with others to only do a short note on info about the teacher and quick contact information. The school sends out info on attendance/tardy policies, etc etc. Parents are often overwhelmed by the amount of information they receive. Keep it short and sweet.
     
  10. Evergreen

    Evergreen Rookie

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    Jul 1, 2016

    This is all great information - thank you! I haven't gotten information regarding this, classroom set-up, or curriculum as of yet from my new school (and I did ask - once). Do most teachers receive this info in August? I don't want to pester them.

    Also, phillyteacher, I'd definitely be interested in seeing your letter if you get a chance to post it - thanks again.
     
  11. mathmagic

    mathmagic Enthusiast

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    Jul 1, 2016

    Yes, usually teachers get all the information during that week or few days before school (I was in that position a couple years ago). You could keep asking, or see if you can get in touch with other teachers at that school, though, to get a heads-up.
     
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