What To Ask Your Child’s Teacher During Parent-Teacher Conferences
Parent-teacher conferences can be overwhelming and sometimes seem unproductive for parents. You walk into your child’s school, sign in, and see that there are 28 other parents waiting in line ahead of you. You wait your turn and when you finally get to talk to your child’s teacher, the 15 minute conversation is rushed and you end up forgetting everything you meant to ask.
Fortunately, we’ve created a handy list of questions to ask your child’s teacher about your child’s progress so you don’t have to be put on the spot when it is your time to speak.
Questions About Your Child's Academic Progress
- Is my child performing at grade level?
- How is he or she doing compared to the rest of the class?
- What are his or her strengths?
- How could he or she improve?
Questions About Behavior & Socializing
- How is my child’s behavior?
- How are my child’s social skills?
- Does my child participate in discussion?
- What can I do at home to help my child?
Questions About Citywide & Statewide Exams
- Which exams will my child be taking this year?
- How are my child’s test-taking skills?
- What can I do at home to help my child learn?
- What programs or services are there in the school that can help my child?
- What is the best way to contact the teacher (in person, phone, email, or notes)?
- What services or programs are there in the community that can help my child?
Keep In Mind
Before the parent-teacher conference
You should ask your child about their teachers, their least favorite and most favorite subjects, and any problems they are having in class or with assignments.
During the parent-teacher conference
View your child’s attendance record, grades, and test scores. Take a look at examples of your child’s classwork and their performance benchmarks. This means asking to view your child’s portfolio.
After the parent-teacher conference
If you need more time to talk with your child’s teacher, schedule a follow-up appointment. Discuss with your child what you have learned. Share with them the compliments and the criticisms given by their teachers. Let your child know what they are doing well and how to keep it up. If a subject area needs improvement, use the suggestions and input given to you by the teacher to create a plan with your child for action steps they can take to improve their performance.