30. Parent-Teacher Conferences

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When parents send their children to school, often they don't know what happens day to day. Parents rely on what their children tell them about how they are doing and what they are learning. Generally schools will host parent-teacher conferences at least twice a year. Parent-teacher conferences are short meetings between parents and their children's teachers. Usually parent-teacher conferences are held when teachers give out a student's grades for the term. The parent-teacher conferences give teachers an opportunity to let parents know how their child is doing. A teacher will let a parent know the student's strengths and bring to the parent's attention any problems with grades or behavior. The meetings also offer parents the opportunity to ask questions and see what their child is learning.

When it is almost time for parent-teacher conferences, the school will send parents a note and usually give them an appointment time. There are appointments during the day and in the evening. Evening appointments are used for parents who work during the day. Parent-teacher conferences do not last very long. Normally they do not last longer than 10 minutes. This is why it is important for parents to make sure they arrive at their appointments on time and come prepared with questions. If a parent needs more than 10 minutes, he or she should try to schedule another meeting with the teacher. Keeping a teacher for more than 10 minutes when there are parents waiting is disrespectful.

Most children do not go along with their parents to the meetings. This allows both the parent and teacher to talk honestly about the child's progress without making the child feel bad. Usually a teacher will offer advice to the parent on how to support their child's education.

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