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Parents and educators can agree on one thing: The success of each child is the most important objective this school year. (Let's not forget that many educators are also parents themselves!) As a parent, your goal is your own child's success -- you will do anything to make that a reality. Parents and educators who work cohesively throughout the school year to meet students' educational objectives are ahead of the game. That is why it is so important to build and maintain good relationships with your child's educators -- relationships with open lines of communication on both ends.

mom and teacher talking

Reach Out
Taking a proactive role in forming a good relationship with your child's educators does not have to wait until the school year has begun. Reach out and contact him or her (or them) before school starts. Trade e-mails and phone numbers, and start a dialogue in the days and weeks leading up to the first day of class. This will help ensure that your child's needs are being met on day one.

Show Up
Whenever possible, attend school events and activities. Open houses, back-to-school nights, orientations and parent-teacher conferences were created to develop the relationship between parents and school faculty. Take advantage of these opportunities. Volunteering for classroom hours and/or field trips are also great ways to show the staff you are dedicated and willing to put in the work for your child. Simple participation goes a long way toward developing stronger relationships with educators.

Maintain Communication
The fact that your child is excelling doen't mean that you should cease or reduce communications with school staff. On the contrary, this may be the time to talk more. Find out what is working inside the classroom, and share what you are doing at home to help your child learn at his or her best.

If you find that your child is struggling, talk with the school and your child's Kumon instructor to identify where the disconnect has happened and what concepts might need polishing. Develop an individualized action plan specific to your child's needs, then work together to enact the plan at home and at school.

It's no secret that great relationships of all kinds demand open and honest communication. By taking a spirited approach to building and maintaining good relations with your child's school staff from the start, you will be doing your part to see that your child has the tools he or she needs to succeed.

next: Back-to-School Time and Your Pets
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