Parents Teachers Meetings (PTMs)
TIS fully acknowledges that an effective parent-teacher partnership can make a significant difference in the child’s education and success. The start of a new semester is an ideal time to refocus this partnership.
It is important to consider each parent-teacher meeting as an opportunity to refine the child’s individual learning plan and to make sure the roles of teacher, student and parents are clear, specific and designed to bring out the best in the child. Keeping in mind that teachers have many children demanding their time and attention. A good PTM can help a busy teacher focus on what are the child’s needs.
Parents Teachers Meetings are arranged at least twice in a year. Moreover, PTMs are also arranged on the requirement basis.
Suggestions for the Parents/Guardian Regarding the PTMs
Here are some practical suggestions to make the PTMs as productive as your child needs it to be:
- Don’t take school for granted. Talk to your child about his or her experiences on a daily basis.
Asking, “How was your day?” is a good, open-ended conversation starter. However, you also need to ask specific questions about aspects of school, ranging from your child’s social life (“Who did you play with at recess?”) to academics (“What did you learn in science today?”).
Ask what your child likes and doesn’t like about school, and what is and what isn’t challenging. Parents who understand school as their child experiences it are in a much better position to coach, encourage or intervene properly.
- Discuss your questions and concerns with your partner/spouse a week before the Parent-Teacher Meeting and make sure you and your spouse are on the same page prior to the PTM.
- Identify the information you wish to impart to the teacher. Make notes to remind you of key points to cover during the PTM. Review reports and check your files from previous PTMs to see if it reminds you of important topics you may have missed. Be clear in your own mind about your child’s strengths, weaknesses and appropriate goals. Identify both challenges and the gains your child seems to be making as a student and as a social person.
- If your discussion identifies significant differences in your perceptions or what steps you would like to take to help your child improve, try to resolve them. Even if you cannot agree on everything before meeting, just come up in the PTMs having your questions and differing perceptions, it will make the PTMS more productive and ask for more input at the meeting from the teacher to clarify your perceptions.
- Be on time, but don’t schedule yourself too tightly. Teachers facing a succession of concerned parents may find it difficult to remain on schedule, and you want to have plenty of time to do a thorough job.
- Listen to the teacher share perceptions before raising your concerns. Identify areas of agreement and ask clarifying questions about others. Paraphrase frequently and summarize periodically to ensure clarity and mutual agreement on key points.
- Develop a team approach with the teacher because parents and teachers are two important pillars of Success Bridge of a child.
- Take notes during the PTMs. Although things seem clear while you are talking about them, good notes will help you remember accurately
- Agree to a specific learning plan for your child.
This may be as simple as continuing to do the things that already are working at home and school, or it may involve restructuring homework, creating a special study space at home, or making sure a child with a learning disability receives extra time necessary for test-taking.
Part of a good plan — especially if there are any serious issues being addressed — means scheduling a time to meet again to reassess the progress that has been made and the plan itself.
Parents who utilize these simple, common-sense strategies significantly will increase the chances that school will be the successful experience they want for their children.