Good communication between the teacher and parent is important and if you get it right, it can encourage better home involvement. Improved home involvement has the potential to increase motivation, good behaviour, attendance and homework.
Teachers can also learn more about the students and their home environments from the parents or carers. Knowing this type of information can help to better meet the needs of the individual.
Reach out early at the start of the year, then explain how and when you'll keep in touch with them on a regular basis. Weekly is an ideal target to aim for, but maybe too ambitious. Just ensure that there isn't any big gaps left between each communication.
Choose your methods
With so many communication methods these days, it is best to ask parents which is the best method for them in order to avoid wasting time with no responses. Do not assume that parents are all the same, some may prefer an email over a phone call or vice versa.
Encourage two-way communication. Parents may know things that you don't and you can learn from these. Be sure to ask questions for valuable feedback so that you can learn and better meet the needs of your students.
The good, the bad and the ugly
When a school calls home, it is usually associated with punishment or an incident. Communicate positive achievements to remove this stigma and brighten the parents’ day with a good news story. Believe it or not, parents like to hear when their child has done something well.
If you are calling home about some concerns, you should always start the communication with positives. Explain what strategies you've already used to address any issues and what new strategies you are considering.
Overcome language barriers
You may find that you do not speak the native language of many of the parents. In these cases, it would be greatly appreciated to make the effort by translating all communications to non-native speakers. This can be done effectively by using translation software such as Google translate. Get a translator to come to parent conferences.
Use communication software
Educater’s Mail module allows you to send mass teacher to parent communications via letter, email or SMS. Having all documents in one place can be useful when safeguarding evidence. We understand it’s a two-way thing, that's why you can also receive email and SMS messages from parents.
Contact us today to find out more about how our school software can benefit your school.