How is your relationship with your child’s school? Are you having an issue with your child’s teacher? At some point during your child’s 13-year academic career – it’s quite possible this can happen. As parents, its our job to be an active team member in our child’s IEP team – but there are several tips to handling issues that arise in a way that can resolve a problem while leaving all of the adults involved feeling positive about how it was handled.
Parents, keep these tips in mind:
- Be ready to compromise. Remember that the team needs to prioritize needs and not everything can be completed in one year. Adding too many goals could reduce time in class with peers.
- Start with the person with whom you have an issue. Problems are often easily resolved with a quick conversation. Don’t immediately go above a teacher or coach’s head. Your goal is to find a resolution to the problem while maintaining a positive relationship.
- Send an email or make an appointment to discuss your concerns. Don’t just show up at the classroom door expecting a conversation. This will ensure your concern is able to be given the time and attention it deserves.
- Have a specific list of questions, and be willing to ask clarifying questions. Many times concerns are easily addressed when both sides understand the concern.
- Ask for it in writing. When you come to an agreement on how an issue will be resolved, you can ask for that resolution in writing. An easy way to do this is to send a follow-up email, thanking the teacher for his or her time, and outlining the resolution.
- If all else fails, involve the principal or the teacher’s direct supervisor. This person can serve as a good mediator or help diffuse a tense situation.
Teachers and parents have one important thing in common – your child, and a strong desire to see him or her succeed.
We are also here to help with the process if you feel you are not being heard. Please reach out to us if you have questions on the process or need help navigating the process.