There a lots of possible reasons for a phone call from your child’s school; some good, others not so much. You may have heard them all by now, but it’s always a bit unnerving just the same. Your thoughts range between What did he do now? to How much is this call going to wind up costing me?
Submitted for your approval: ten reasons parents get calls from school:
- Talk to teacher about grades. – If there are some concerns about your child’s progress – or even when there’s good news to report – you’re apt to get a call from the teacher. Make sure you keep positive and come up with a solution to any issues rather than arguing.
- Child got sick in class. – It could have been nerves before a test, or the result of wolfing down two bowls of Cheerios in 47 seconds in order to make the school bus. Whatever the cause, it happens. Don’t get stressed out or jump to conclusions.
- School is letting out early. – You’ll be advised if and when there’s a change in schedule, in order to arrange to pick your child up or be certain someone is there to meet her at the bus stop. If you are not available, make sure you have some emergency contacts who are.
- Child is being disciplined. – You’d rather not get this particular call, but there are times when kids get into a bit of trouble now and then. Hopefully, it’s nothing more than class clown syndrome, in which case Bozo will be doing without dessert and his Xbox tonight, we’re sure.
- Curriculum change. – In rare instances, as when new material is being introduced in class, parents are apprised of any changes so that they can stay abreast of their kids’ academics. Make sure you pay attention if it is important enough to warrant a call.
- Child skipped class. – Another unpleasant possibility for a phone call from school. Spring fever is always in season, unfortunately. Talk to your child about responsibility and safety concerns and make sure they know what a privilege it is to be educated.
- Advise about an upcoming event. – Field trips, school plays, parent-teacher meetings, open house, etc. You may be getting called about a calendar update. Make sure you write down the information so you don’t forget about it as soon as you hang up.
- Emergency notifications. – In some school districts, an emergency notification system is employed which sends automated messages to the homes of all students, announcing emergency conditions. Stay calm and don’t overload the school with return calls. They will do their best to keep your child safe.
- Reminders – In addition to emergency situations, calls and messages may be simple reminders for tuition payments, past due assignments, etc. Although these can be annoying, they can also be helpful reminders to the forgetful or busy parents.
- Kudos – Yes, sometimes a teacher just wants to pass on a pat on the back and a thank you for the great job your child is doing in school, and for the great job you’ve done in raising her. It’s always a pleasure to get those calls!
The rule of thumb with school calls is to stay calm and composed. It won’t help anyone to get upset. Think clearly and be reasonable. Your children will thank you for it and so will their teachers.