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How to handle a tough parent-teacher meeting

Six ways to make sure you and the teacher are working, and solving problems, together.

By GreatSchools Staff

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Be clear

If you are coming to the teacher with a problem you’re concerned about, try to be as clear as possible. Some parents worry that if they tell the teacher about an issue their child is having in class, the teacher will think they’re criticizing her — or that they’ll get their child into more trouble.

But it’s always best to be open and direct and, as many psychologists advise, start with “I” sentences, so the teacher isn’t put on the defensive: "I’m concerned about my child. She tells me everyone is teasing her.” “I’m not sure what to do. My child says she’s bored during math." “I’m worried my child is getting in fights with other kids.” “I’m not sure why, but my child thinks you don’t like her.” (This is a tough one to say, but if your child believes this, it’s best to talk about it and find a solution.) By being clear with the teacher, you have a better chance of solving the problem.

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