Parents must not be afraid to ask questions of their child's school

By
Real Estate Agent with Keller Williams Realty

Many parents arefearful of asking too many questions of administrators and teachers .They fear retaliation ontheir children if they ask questions or raise concerns. As a past educational administrator,I can tell you the opposite is true. Administrators and teachers gain respect for you since you are taking an interest in your child's education. Just look at the children of PTA mothers , most get what they want for their child's education just because they are more visible and have on-going communication with the administration .Even parents who are not English speaking have the right to get a translator so they can better familiarize themselves with the school.Parents must be well informed when raising concerns or asking questions. Parents have the right to inspect their child's cumulative educational record once a year. All the parent needs to do is request an appointment to view the records.If the request is denied then a parent has a right to complain to the superintendent of schools. Parents also have the right to observe teachers in a classroom. Again with the authorization by the school principal. Most school system build parent visitation days for this purpose.Attending Open Houses, parent teacher conference and school events also allows parents an opportunity to see the school environment. Parents also can attend Board meetings where they have the opportunity to speak up about concerns that go unanswered or unresolved. As a past board trustee I can tell you many parents and community members exercise this right and sometimes trustees hear of the situation for the first time.Usually bythis point the board questions the superintendent who questions a principal regarding a particular incident. Parents must be persistent and document everything from correspondence they send to the school to getting names of people they spoke to. All children deserve a great education and sometimes schools need to tighten the screws where they are loose,whether it is better teaching, better discipline or more parental involvement.  As taxpayers we are paying for the schools and the salaries of all those involved. Since we pay the 100,000 salaries they should be accountable to us as parents. With accountability and assessment results being at the forefront of everything we must demand the best of all those involved. Until we all have an equal say in the process things will continue to be the same. As a community we must all work together for the benefit of all our children.

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