This month, our teachers met with parents of our students in person for conferences, for the first time since the pandemic broke out. “Students and teachers have been working harder after an entire year of being online. It was time to organize the conferences so that parents and teachers could meet to share the progress reports of students.” said Crispin Wilondja, Student & Family Engagement Manager.”
Parental involvement is a critical element of student success in any learning environment. At GVP, engaging with parents can present challenges, given that many parents speak different languages and so communication often involves interpreters and translators. Additionally, organizing conferences at times that are convenient for parents can often be a challenge, given their work schedules. In order to facilitate full participation, GVP’s approach often involves providing transportation for parents as well.
In previous years, conferences occurred at the same time on a Saturday morning, in a very large room and always in a four hour time span. However, this year, due to Covid, parent conferences were held as small group meetings, requiring extensive planning and logistical arrangements. But parents, students and teachers alike were present and engaged and our hallways and classrooms buzzed with conversations centered on our collective efforts to ensure our students’ success.
“Family conferences are an integral part of our school year,” said Dr. Cassie Leymarie, Director of Education & Impact. “Nothing is better than sitting down and talking in person with a student and their parents. It’s an important time for everyone to listen, share, and learn how we can better help each student.”