RMDS Policy on Parent / Teacher Communication (2013)
A fundamental aspect of a good educational experience for our pupils is high quality parent / teacher communication. In RMDS, the staff will contact parents about our concerns whether they relate to behaviour, academic progress or social interaction. Parents are also encouraged to contact us with their concerns, sooner rather than later.
There are three formal points of contact during the school year:
1) Class Letters / Class Meetings
In September / October, class meetings are held with the parents of the children in each class. The programme and methodology for the year is explained, code of behaviour restated and the policy on homework, tours, RSE, Stay Safe, health and safety, supplementary teaching etc outlined. An opportunity for questions is given. Meetings are normally held in the morning for about 45 minutes. Notes are emailed to all parents following the meeting.
2) Individual Parent / Teacher Meetings
These are held each year in November. This is an opportunity for teachers to inform parents of their child’s progress in all aspects of the curriculum. The Learning Support / Resource teacher attends relevant meetings. Substitute cover is provided for up to two days for the class teacher. Meetings normally last 10 – 15 minutes.
3) End of Year reports
These reports are a written record of the child’s progress in school that year. They include standardised test scores for the child for that year. A copy is attached.
The period between 8.30am and 8.50am and at school collection time are useful points of contact for incidental matters and clarification. The homework journal or a note in the school bag is also used to communicate with parents.
Other Formal Meetings
Parents who wish to have a consultation with a class teacher are encouraged to make a prior appointment with the relevant teacher. In urgent cases where a pre-arranged appointment is not appropriate, parents should report, in the first instance to the secretary / Principal. The practice of parents approaching class rooms directly during teaching time is discouraged. Specifically, access to teachers should be on an “appointment only” basis, where the circumstances of a meeting are likely to provoke a confrontation. Where sensitive issues are the subject of discussion, arrangements should be made for conducting such interviews in privacy. Teachers should arrange to have the Principal, or where appropriate, another teacher present at such meetings.
Where an issue has arisen during the school day which the teacher feels must be drawn to the attention of parents immediately, the following methods of communication are appropriate:
Special Educational Needs / Learning Support
There are additional arrangements in place for children with special educational needs and learning support needs. These include Individual Education Planning meetings. A diary system is in place for children who are non verbal or in other special cases.
Please see SEN policy
Policy with regard to requests for written reports
In general, the school facilitates requests for letters from parents in good faith and without recourse to the other parent.
However, in cases where it has been agreed with parents / guardians that separate p/t meetings will take place and / or individual copies of school notices will be sent out, we have decided that in future, all letters or written correspondence from the school, requested by either parent / guardian, will be copied to both parents.
This policy will be reviewed at regular intervals.
Signed Colm Healy Chairperson Board of Management
Date November 2013