6 Must-Ask Questions at Your Upcoming Parent-Teacher Conference

Feb 9, 2021 | Centennial East

6 Must-Ask Questions at Your Upcoming Parent-Teacher Conference


As the 2nd half of the school year gets into full swing, it’s time to formally meet with your child’s teacher(s) for the parent-teacher conference. This meeting is an opportunity to have an open conversation between two parties with your child's best interests as the focus. To avoid a one-way discussion and help you get the most out of it, it’s a great idea to show up to your next parent-teacher conference with a list of open-ended questions to ask your child’s teacher. Let’s highlight 6 questions you can consider.


(1)  Where is my child’s proficiency in math and how does it compare to state standards?

The teacher can explain how your child is performing and should be able to provide you with a visual example of how your child is doing in comparison to the required math competencies for the state.

If you are told your child is not meeting the state’s math proficiency standards (hopefully you have been made aware of this prior to the conference), ask the teacher how he or she plans to help your child achieve the required standard and if there is any additional action you should take to supplement.  Immediate action should be taken to help your child catch up as quickly as possible.


(2) Will my child be taught all of the curriculum for this year as defined by the standard or a subset?

Now that you know your child's math proficiency level, you want to be informed about the subject matter focus for the year. You can then express any concerns you may have about how well your child will do with the curriculum based on their skill level. Your child’s teacher can then explain how the school is working to ensure your child will successfully learn the required curriculum and if anything will be left out for the year that you may need to supplement.


(3) What improvements has my child made this year? And how do these advancements compare to what you’d expect in a “typical” year?

This an opportunity to hear about your child’s positive progress. If there were any problems you were made aware of last year, hopefully this will be the time the teacher can highlight the improvements made on last year’s issues or concerns. Since this has not been a normal school year due to Covid-19, it’s vital to ensure that your child’s growth in math is still on track. If the teacher determines your child is at risk of falling behind, they can partner with you to develop ways to help your child begin to improve.


(4) Can you provide me with a list of skill gaps you notice in my child? What concepts does my child excel with? 

Due to Covid-19 changing the learning environment and structure for children over the last year, it’s important to identify any learning gaps your child may be experiencing.  The teacher can collaborate with you and come up with a plan to close the gaps. To balance any learning loss concerns, you also want to highlight areas your child is thriving in. Then you can offer them encouragement and see if their strengths can be integrated into areas where they are struggling.


(5) How can I work with my child at home to reinforce what is being taught in the classroom?

With the ongoing changes to your child’s learning environment and the inevitable learning gaps they have caused, it’s very important to supplement what your child is learning in the classroom at home. Your child’s teacher has a wealth of professional knowledge and resources to assist you with finding engaging activities across various mediums to keep your child learning and advancing outside of the classroom. You can also access a variety of online resources from your local library, area museums and virtual community events to expand what your child is learning at home.


(6) How is my child’s emotional state and behavior during classroom and/or online learning?

It is important to address your child’s social-emotional learning. You want to ensure that you are made aware of how your child responds and reacts to their academic setting and interaction with peers. If a behavioral issue is identified or if you are noticing a change in your child’s attitude towards their math subjects or school in general, it’s important to discuss this with the teacher to allow for early interventions.  The teacher can then provide guidance on options and accommodations for your child that are available to help them in and out of the classroom.


These questions should give you a roadmap to information you want to know as your child begins another academic period. Once the conference is over, if it's discovered your child is experiencing math learning difficulties or they need more of a challenge, we're here to help you. We offer tried and true individualized instruction for children in grades 2 through 12. Give us a call or send us an email to schedule your child's free assessment today.