Fairfield Parents and Community,
Time for Parent/Teacher Conferences
The time has come already in this early part of the school year where school districts across the state are hosting parent/teacher conferences. This year our PreK-5 conferences will continue as they have in the past. Our 6-8 grades will also be the same where the teachers will be in their room during conferences. The high school grades 9-12 will be changing the focus of their parent meetings. The teachers will now confer with parents on career/college interests. No longer will the discussion revolve around grades and behavior (although those discussions can occur if necessary). The change is to encourage parents to come to the school and engage in what is happening with their student’s education and the future!
Historically we have less than 40% of parents show up for 9-12 conferences here at Fairfield. We want to improve that statistic and partner with parents to gear the students up for what are the possibilities to come after high school. Mr. Briar will be offering a more in-depth look at the new approach of conferences in another article of this newsletter.
Student Achievement tied to Parent Engagement
There is a large body of research that ties student academic achievement to the activity level of parent involvement or parent engagement, I believe that parent/teacher conferences is definitely one avenue for parents to get involved with their child academically and partner with the school as they grow in aspirations toward career/college. We define parent involvement as families and communities who take an active role in creating a caring educational environment. The status quo across the state and nation is that most parents do not get involved and their kids “make it through the system” (Hara & Burke, 1998). Here at Fairfield, we do not accept that mentality. We are striving to improve the partnerships between school, family, and communities. The goal is to increase not only academic achievement of students but also in-school participation in extracurricular activities of students, attendance of students, self-esteem of students, discipline referral decrease, parental support of learning, and community unity to name a few.
School behavior, achievement, and career aspirations, and parents’ roles in shaping these factors do not occur separately (Hill et al., 2004). Meaning, the more parent involvement there is, the better the overall experience of the student(s) during their K-12 education. Career goals begin to form from interests and strengths of each student during the middle and high school years. It is important for parents to be aware and participate in this development.
We look forward to this new opportunity at FHS and invite every parent to come check out the new design and message of the teachers about the students. The staff is committed to all the students and would like to share the excitement of the future of each of your children. Of course, we want all parents of PreK-12 students to continue to participate in conferences as well. Our Fall Parent Teacher Conferences are to be held October 26-27 from 4-8 pm each day. We hope to see you here!
Superintendent of Schools USD 310 Fairfield
Hara, S. R., & Burke, D. J. (1998). Parent involvement: The key to improved student achievement. School Community Journal, 8(2), 9-19.
Hill, N. E., Castellino, D. R., Lansford, J. E., Nowlin, P., Dodge, K. A., Bates, J. E., & Pettit, G. S. (2004). Parent academic involvement as related to school behavior, achievement, and aspirations: Demographic variations across adolescence. Child development, 75(5), 1491-1509.