Here are some tips to help you get the most out of meetings at your children’s schools.
Before the Meeting
- Find someone to go to the meeting with you. It can be a friend or relative. Their role is:
- to take notes so you can concentrate on what is being said
- to tell you to take a short break if you are getting upset
- to check off the items you wanted to cover at the meeting
- Draft an agenda of points you want covered at the meeting. Use the agenda during the meeting to make sure all the issues you want to talk about are discussed.
- Review your children’s most recent report cards, medical records and IEPs and bring copies with you to the meeting in case you need to refer to them.
At the Meeting
|Credit: State of Maine|
- Make sure you are introduced to everyone in attendance and that you get their contact information.
- Concentrate on listening – your companion will be the note taker.
- Raise your most important points first, as you may not have enough time to cover all your points in this meeting.
- Don’t be pressured into making a decision on an important issue at the meeting – you need to consider it in a more comfortable environment.
- Before the meeting ends, make sure a date is set for the next meeting – either to check on the progress of issues raised or to discuss new issues.
After the Meeting
- Review the notes taken by your companion and make any additions or corrections.
- Follow up every meeting with a letter. Use the notes from the meeting for guidance. The letter should confirm what happened at the meeting, who was present and any agreements made. It should also confirm the date for the next meeting.
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