Three Ways to Stay Connected with Your Child’s School – The Ontario College of Teachers
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If you parent a child that is in school then you will be familiar with this timeless afterschool exchange.
“How was school today?”
“Anything exciting happen?”
“What did you do today at school?”
It’s the communications challenge of parents everywhere. Sometimes staying in the loop regarding your child’s education seems like an insurmountable task. So what’s an educated, involved, parent to do? Luckily there are a lot of tools available to you these days with digital assets and email to help keep parents informed of teaching practices and changes. The first place to start is with your child and the next person in line is of course the teacher.
Three Ways to Stay Connected to Your Child’s School:
1. Sign up for The Standard emails:
The Ontario College of Teachers has many assets available to help parents understand and make sense of the curriculum, teaching goals and standards and basic education news updates. Sign up for their electronic newsletter to help keep you informed. Click on the link below to sign up.
2. Join the Parent : I did this for several years because it was the best way to get communication straight from the source. It helped me to know when the PD Days were and when the reports were coming home and even simple things such as how big all the classes were that year.
3. Check the school web site often. It’s a simple thing but easy to forget. Often there are updates about assemblies and things posted on the main site. It doesn’t hurt to check.
There are numerous other tools available to you as a parent to help you understand more about your child’s school and the education professionals working in that environment. For instance if you want to check a teacher’s criteria and special skills out, you can check in with the Ontario College of Teachers Web site to learn how Ontario teachers are certified. All teachers who wish to teach in Ontario’s elementary and secondary schools have to be certified. Prospective teachers complete a teacher education program in Ontario and then apply to be certified by the Ontario College of Teachers.
Many teachers are committed to lifelong professional development. It’s a philosophy the college and professional body subscribe to. Each year, thousands of Ontario teachers engage in a wide range of learning activities that help members expand their knowledge, increase their skills and prepare for career changes. The Ontario College of Teachers recognizes exemplary teachers in their magazine, Professionally Speaking.
– check out their stories here: http://professionallyspeaking.oct.ca/exemplary.aspx
Teachers have a strong commitment to ethical standards laid out by the Ontario College of Teachers. They practice care, trust, respect and integrity. The college also has a disciplinary hearing process to vet complaints. They are mandated to hear complaints if they occur. There are 239,000 members and roughly 90 complaints a year are heard. You can read more about that process here:
Teachers are important partners in helping educate your child. There are a lot of resources available to help you maintain a better understanding of, and communication with your child’s school and the teacher. Pin this post so you have it if ever an issue or concern arises.
I wish I had enough time to sign up to volunteer at my son school. That’s something I really would like to get involved in. For now I get my info via the school website.
These are some good programs. I think it would be beneficial to many parents.
I started volunteering in my kids classes because I could not get a straight answer out of them about what they did in class. So now I can see for myself 🙂
Great tips, thank you. My son constantly says “I can’t remember” when I ask him about his day at school. So frustrating! x
(Terry) My Journey With Candida
It is so great that today you can connect to your childrens school through emails. When my Daughter was young, I had to become a Mommy Helper to keep up with what was going on.
I was a stay at home mom so most often I went to school and volunteered many days. This made relationships with teachers stronger and it helped my children become secure. I could talk to the teachers and find ways to help each of them. I had two but they were totally different so different strategies were needed. Of course this was before internet and such.
Lois Alter Mark
I was room mom for both of my kids each year of elementary school. It was the only way I really got to see what was going on in the classroom!
That would be such a great resource. I understand trying to make our children responsible for the things they need to do, but we constantly get the – “I have a research paper due tomorrow” and then find they learned about it weeks before of course.
These are great points! In this “digital age” we live in, it’s even more important to stay connected in “real” ways! Especially when it comes to kiddos!
I try to stay connected as much as possible. I cannot volunteer since I work during the day I am connected with the teachers.
This is not a problem for me at all. At my daughter’s school all parents are encouraged to logon to the portal at least once a week so that we all know what’s going on. And I myself have been a room mom 3 different times, I think it’s really important to be involved and alert.
I’ve been involved in the classroom and pta since my kids were little. Now that there are 4 of them its not easy but I try to volunteer at least once a quarter in each class and of course whenever else there is a big event.
I like that I can email my son’s teachers whenever I want or just pop in to see how is is doing. This is very helpful to me as he never tells me how his day went.
This is so amazing. My girls school is not that high tech. When we need to communicate we usually have to call.
I don’t volunteer at the school but I do ask plenty of questions and attend any meetings I can. It is important to me to do that!
These are great tips! I always feel out of the loop with the kdis schools
I think it’s important to be connected with my children’s school. I’m pretty active in their education. I volunteer at their school as often as possible and I have joined the PTA.
I will volunteer occasionally, but I really like to go to lunch with my girls. Even though the food isn’t so tasty, I am able to chat up some of the staff, plus learn more about the kids my girls are going to school with too!
Heather @ Girl Gone Mom
That’s the exact conversation I have with my daughter daily – ha! Luckily her teacher is very available and I have joined the PTA to become more aware and involved.
These are great resources and suggestions! I agree- when you volunteer, even if it’s for one event, it opens up a whole new way of communicating!
My son’s teacher gave parents a messenger board and it’s cool. She types in it daily, and we can if we want to. :)_
I remember giving my parents those answers when I came home from school. Volunteering sounds like a great way to keep in touch! x
Great information. It is so important to stay in touch with teachers. Love the resources.
I am trying to stay on top of my son’s school and he is only in preschool! There are so many things to remember!
Casa Vilora Interiors
I try to but quite frankly my kids schools send way too many emails….and really long ones too. A lot don’t even apply to me. So while I like to stay connected, getting emails gets to be too much
We just had parent teacher conferences tonight! Of course I’m always at the school since our local library is located there & I bake treats for the secretaries in the office, so it’s easy for me to stay involved in everything.
Communication and trust are key. Parents need to be able to trust the teachers and the teachers should communicate early to keep that trust.
I try to volunteer as much as possible in my Kids school. That is one way I am aware of what is happening in their class.