Friday, October 21, 2011

A quiet kind of day

It's a quiet kind of day without children or a good number of staff members here because of the province-wide professional development day. This is giving me a chance to complete some paperwork for the school board office and to take another good look at scheduling of support for students. I've even had some telephone talk with some parents and other professionals today. And, I've had a chance to review some of my ideas about the reporting process. I must say that these are my ideas and do not reflect upon the ideas of those within the school or the broader school district staff and community.

Narrative Reporting

I used to enjoy narrative reporting when I was a teacher and later as a principal there were times when narrative reporting was done by most primary teachers and some intermediate teachers. Narrative reporting is different from what we see today in report cards with checklists of meeting or not meeting objectives, letter grades, or at the secondary level percentages. Narrative reporting can be written or it can be oral.

Our Superintendent, Patrick Bocking – you can see a link to his blog on the right side of this page – has written a letter to parents that has the following quotation:

The partnership between teachers and parents is crucial to best meet the needs of our students. While teachers are not completing report cards during the job action, there is no other restriction for parent/teacher contact except that there will not be a formal parent/teacher conference session.

In my brief time at the school, I am aware of teachers and parents initiating contact with one another to discuss in a more narrative way the progress of  students. If there is a concern about learning identified by the teacher, the teacher will initiate that conversation … likewise if you have a concern about the learning needs of your child, please initiate a conversation with the teacher.

Again, from my perspective, letter grades and checklists mean little without the narrative approach whether written or oral.

On November 23 and 24 there will be some time in the school day provided for discussion with parents. But please, don’t necessarily wait until then. Keep the dialogue open.

Have a great weekend and we'll see your children back at the school on Monday when today's rain will hopefully have dissipated. 

No comments:

Post a Comment