During the school year, and especially at back to school time, it’s not uncommon for parents to receive information regarding what they can do to improve their relationship with schools. From decades of working with parents, Parent Action for Healthy Kids shares parents’ thoughts and offers these 10 things parents would like schools to know.
1. Parents value authenticity. Be a person first and an educator second.
2. Shaming and blaming is a sure fire way to keep us from coming back.
3. Please don’t judge us. Things are not always as they appear.
4. Raising a family is fun but also stressful. We don’t need to be pitied or saved. It’s about relationships. It is not your job to solve our problems, please just listen and be supportive.
5. Don’t assume that what you think we need to know is what we think we need to know.
6. Instead of telling us you want us to be involved, why don’t you ask us how we would like to and are able to be involved.
7. “Our babies don’t keep” – Please understand our emotional reactions. We only get one chance with our kids. We worry and often feel powerless and inadequate. Please know that under the anger is intense fear.
8. If you want us to work within your system, be a buddy and show us the ropes. You know the culture of the way you do business. We’re not talking about the “Parent Handbook,” we’re talking about the unspoken rules and the way school business is conducted.
9. If you survey us about what we think about a particular topic, let us know what you did with the information and how it improved what you are doing for our kids.
10. We don’t want to tell you how to run your school. Rather we desire a leader who can communicate effectively and are decisive about what is in the best interest of our kids.
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