Starting the School Year off Right
Ten Ideas for Making a Successful Start:
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- For students with complicated needs, or in transition (e.g. new school), agree to meet a month after school starts to assess how things are going. This should be a short meeting of less than an hour if possible.
- Agree on an agenda for the above meeting or any meeting.
- E-mail only on important issues. Be sure that e-mails aren’t all negative. This goes for schools as well as parents. Nothing ruins a parent’s evening quicker than the “do you know what your kid did today?” message.
- E-mails should be short and not attempt to summarize the entire history of the world. Anything serious merits a phone call. Do not e-mail every day.
- Keep the tone in any communication professional and not personal. Don’t fire off an e-mail you will later regret. Sleep on it if you must.
- Identify a point person for most, if not all, communications. Communicate with that person only.
- If that person isn’t responsive talk to their supervisor, principal, or special education director regarding the issue.
- Don’t wait until a small concern becomes a big problem. (e.g. incomplete homework)
- Keep a record of your communications with the school, any significant events, etc.
- Maintain a sense of humor. It helps.