Principal suggests 'exploding' traditional parent-teacher conference | December 3, 2010 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

News - December 3, 2010

Principal suggests 'exploding' traditional parent-teacher conference

In annual review, elementary school heads discuss trends, goals

by Chris Kenrick

A Palo Alto school principal has suggested that teachers "explode" the traditional parent-teacher conference in an effort to achieve more candid conversations with parents about how their children are really doing.

This story contains 857 words.

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Staff Writer Chris Kenrick can be e-mailed at


Posted by parent, a resident of Barron Park
on Dec 3, 2010 at 11:17 am

Suzanne Scott is on target. We need to pass some of this new awareness to our Young 5's and district preschool programs as well.

Posted by Becky Sanders, a resident of Ventura
on Dec 3, 2010 at 11:40 am

Kids will "perform" to the best of their abilities if they are emotionally invested. The way to get them to emotionally invest is for them to know that the teachers and staff are emotionally invested in them. That means that not only teachers but staff must strive to know each child's name and that teachers really be given the support they need to understand as best they can each child in their charge. The secret is to build that crucial mentor-student relationship where a child will know that he/she is cared about and that their culture is not only understood but accepted and honored. And when the teachers and staff demonstrate that level of caring, that teaches all of the kids how to treat and value one another. I will get down off my high horse now.

Posted by mom, a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Dec 5, 2010 at 7:29 pm

Our elementary school claimed that kid-by-kid discussions happened twice a year every school year. I believed this until I found out that the discussion was scheduled for 45 minutes per class. In a class with about 20 kids and several with significant behavioral problems, it was clear to me that normal kids were discussed for 30 seconds, if at all.

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