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Parent Teacher Conferences

October 20, 2021
Family Support, Special Education

Parent-Teacher conferences give you the opportunity to discuss the progress your child has made academically, socially, and behaviorally. It is also a time to voice any concerns you may have. For children with IEPs, it is a perfect time to review their goals.

Before the Meeting

It is important to be prepared and ask the right questions in order to make a solid plan for your child’s education.

  • Before the conference, review with your child their feelings about school and explain why Parent-Teacher Conferences are important.
  • Make an appointment and be on time. Bring a pen/paper or phone to take notes. Bring samples of your child’s work and reports, such as report cards, letters, and assignments to the meeting.
  • Write down your questions to help you prioritize them in case there is not enough time. If you run out of time, you can always make another appointment or send a follow up email.
  • Speak positively to set the tone. You want the teacher to feel that you are a part of your student’s team. Discuss problems and concerns, but do not assign blame. Ask the teacher what you can do to help.
  • If your child has an IEP, bring a copy with you. Please call INCLUDEnyc’s Help Line if you have questions about the IEP before or after the conference. 

During the Meeting

Questions to Ask:

  • What are my child’s strongest subjects?
  • What subjects does my child need to work on? 
  • How does my child learn? Are they a visual or physical learner? How is the teacher meeting those needs?
  • How is my child tested? Evaluated? Are they receiving the right accommodations?
  • Does my child hand in assignments on time?
  • Does my child participate in class? Are they engaged and happy?
  • Does my child’s behavior affect their learning? What is being done to help them?
  • What can I do at home to support my child’s learning?
  • How can I communicate with my child’s teacher regularly, e.g. phone calls, emails, notebook?
  • If your child receives special services in or out of the classroom, ask about progress in those classes or sessions. Who is providing these services, in what location, at what time, and how many children are in my child’s group?

Things to Consider:

  • Share your child’s thoughts and feelings about school and what is or is not working for them.
  • Ask for explanations about anything that you do not understand, such as grading or technical language.
  • Thank the teacher and any other people involved.
  • After the conference, talk to your child about the meeting. Describe both the positive points and the areas that need to be worked on.
  • Talk to your child about plans for the future.
  • Stay in contact with the teacher and school on a regular basis.