Parent-Teacher Conferences

On Tuesday the 21st of February, and now on Thursday, March 1st at west, the staff held parent-teacher conferences.

The conferences are a chance for parents to catch up with what goes on in their child’s classroom, beyond what can be seen from a report card, or a page on Powerschool. Freshman Rachael Reis thinks that conferences are useful because “parents can see how their kids are doing in school.” According to Ms. Kurz, a health teacher, the conferences offer adults the opportunity to learn valuable information about how things are going at school.

However, she notes a trend towards reduced attendance to the conferences. Mr. Prothero, a Computers teacher, agreed, describing the turnout as “a little light in comparison to previous years.” He cited the increased availability and use of technology as a determining factor in the reduction of the number of parents coming to the conferences. “I think the existence of Powerschool has an effect,” he said, “because now parents can see the grades of their students at any time.”
Mr. Schuster, also a Computers teacher, felt similarly, though he also cited as a cause the efforts of teachers.

According to him, teachers are “doing a good job of communicating any problems as they happen.” He says, “Teachers and parents want to be informed of any problems right away, so they don’t wait for conferences to get the details.”

Tim Mueller, a Sophomore, thought that “parents might be embarrassed about their students’ grades,” so they don’t come to the conferences.

Parents also might not see the conferences as being as useful as the staff hope them to be. If kids are already failing classes at this point in the semester, parents might be inclined to think that a simple meeting with the teachers will do little good, as Kurz hypothesized. In her words, “The parent may feel that by now it’s simply too late to fix things.”