How To Prepare For Your First Parents' Evening
Samantha Hale, Associate in Education and Community Care, shares 4 tips on how parents can prepare for their first parents' evening, including key questions to ask teachers.
4 Tips On How To Handle Parents' Evening
Here's 4 things that can help you to make the most of your child's parents' evening:
- Speak to everyone working with your child – as well as speaking to your child's teacher, you should speak to other members of staff who work with them, like their SENCO or counsellor. This will help you get a well-rounded update on their progress and find out whether they have any concerns. It will also give you the chance to ask questions or to raise any changes that have happened at home that could affect your child at school.
- Don't be afraid to ask questions – it's always a good idea to make a list of questions you'd like to ask your child's teachers beforehand, especially since time is usually quite tight. Listen to their feedback carefully, and if they raise any concerns such as your child is finding it hard to concentrate make sure that you ask them for specific examples of when this happens. It could be the case that your child is finding a certain type of task or subject difficult and they need more support.
- Ask for a follow-up phone call – if you're worried about your child's progress or they have started a new school, for example, you can ask their teachers whether you could arrange a follow-up phone call. This will give you the chance to keep a closer eye on your child's progress at school and check whether they are adjusting well. If you're unable to attend parents' evening, you can ask your child's school whether you can arrange a phone call with their teacher. If your child has special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), you could request a face-to-face meeting with their SENCO.
- Let your child know how parents' evening went – even though you might not realise it, your child is probably feeling just as anxious about parents' evening as you are! Give them an update on how the evening went, including positive feedback and an overview of their progress – this will help to boost their confidence. You could also mention whether there's anything both you and your child can work together on to help them improve or progress even more.
What Kinds Of Questions Can I Ask My Child's Teachers?
If you're struggling to come up with questions to ask your child's teachers, you can consider asking the following:
- What are my child's strengths and weaknesses?
- How does my child get on with other children?
- Do you think my child needs extra support, for example through the SENCO or an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP)?
- Is my child's EHCP suited to their learning needs?
- What progress has my child made at school with SEN support?
- How can you help my child improve?
- Is there anything else that I can do at home to help my child progress?
How Can Simpson Millar's Education Lawyers Help Me?
If your child has SEND and you're unhappy with the support that they're getting at school, our Education Law team might be able to help.
If your child has an EHCP and you don't think that it's meeting their needs or you would like to make changes to the EHCP, we can review your child's plan and help you request an early annual review.