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Parent Engagement in Schools - How to Build a Collaborative Relationship With Your Child's School

February 06, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 156

Parent engagement in schools is very helpful for building positive working relationships with the educators that will be working with your child. This can be especially helpful and advantageous for parents of children with special needs. Establishing and maintaining communication with your child's teacher, service providers and case manager helps build rapport and trust. Making an effort to attend Back to School Night, Parent/Teacher Conferences and IEP Meetings helps you be informed and communicates your commitment to your child's education. Educators tend to look upon volunteering to help in some way very positively.

It is very beneficial to both you and the school to determine the most practical and efficient way to communicate about your child. Talk to your child's teacher or case manager about what is the best way to establish regular communication about how your child is doing in school. Many special education teachers have planners, contact logs or communication journals for regular back-and-forth communication. Some people may prefer to use e-mail or the telephone for communication. It is always helpful to the school to share things that are going on at home that could be affecting your child at school.

If it is at all possible, at least one parent should attend important meetings at the school. This can be difficult to fit into your schedule but it is worth rearranging your schedule if you are able. Schools will often work with you to schedule conferences and IEP meetings at a time that is more convenient for your schedule, if you ask. It is important to know that school personnel tend to view parents who show up to meetings as more invested in their child's education.

Volunteering to assist at your child's school does not have to be a huge time commitment. If you have the time and flexibility to be a regular volunteer schools certainly welcome that, but it is not necessary for being engaged with the school. You can volunteer one time during the year to chaperone a field trip, assist with field day, bake for a bake sale, send in food or supplies for a party or celebration or do a presentation to your child's classroom about your area of expertise.

Parent engagement in school is likely to help your child experience more success at school. Establishing a collaborative and cooperative relationship with your child's teacher and school can only help you as a parent if difficulties arise in your child's learning or behavior. It is a win-win situation for you, your child and the school when everyone is working towards the common goal of providing a quality education

Remember that when parents and schools who work together as a team to educate children the quality of education tends to be higher. This collaboration is even more critical in educating children with special needs. To learn more about parental engagement and adocating for your child with special needs, please visit my site.

Source: EzineArticles
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