September 2004

Building Parent Partnerships

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Parent Conferences - Oh, no! Conference time is just around the corner. Use the
questionnaire below to help parents share information about their child and to guide the conference. Send home the questionnaire several days before the conference.
(If parents show up without it, simply smile and say, "I'll give you a few minutes to fill out this form before we get started." )
Other helpful hints for conferences:

     • Sit beside the parent at a table, rather than behind a desk.

     • Keep the conversation focused on the child.

     • Have samples of the child's work to share with the parents. Focus on the
        total child, including intellectual, physical, social, and emotional development.

     • Discuss goals and future plans. Try to give the parents specific ideas for how
        they can help their child at home.

     • If there is a problem, brainstorm solutions and develop a plan for action.

     • End the conference on a positive note by reassuring the parents and thanking
        them for their support.

     • Follow-up with the parents after the conference.

Hint! If a parent does not speak English, be sure and provide an interpreter.
Click here for a printable copy of the parent questionnaire.
Word format | Acrobat Reader format

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