I’m a Honor Roll Parent...Now What?
The first nine weeks will be ending soon for most students. Grades will be served up to millions of children. Parents/guardians around America either await confirmation of an anticipated A or A/B honor roll. Or perhaps grimace at the thought of seeing another nine weeks of underachievement. Attending school during my say seemed simpler. I knew I had to graduate, go to college and get a job. Now that I’ve gained insight into the education system as a teacher I realize that entrance into a college of quality is based on more than A or A/B honor roll. As a parent, with children of my own, I understand that A and A/B honor roll won’t cut it, the stakes are higher. Good grades are wonderful to have. I mean who doesn’t love to display an “I’m an Honor Roll Parent” bumper sticker? But, in all honesty good grades pale in comparison to the weight of standardized test scores. For instance, standardized test scores determine course level placement, who is encouraged to take the PSAT/SAT, in some cases graduation and even entrance into graduate schools. Unfortunately, African American and Hispanic children trail White students in all of the aforementioned categories. The National Center for Education Statistics found in 2006 that only 3.6% of African Americans and 4.2% of Hispanic American children were enrolled in Gifted and Talented classes in comparison with 8% White children. Here are a few tips to keep in mind as you go through your child’s first nine weeks report.
If your child’s report card is stacked with A’s and B’s…Hooray! But don’t forget to:
Inquire how your child can move up to honors/accelerated classes for next year
- Note: Is your child in grades 3-8? Check out their Standardized Test scores from the 2011-2012 school year, if they are in the 90th percentile or above you may have a good case
- Note: Is your child in high school? Inquire about entrance or parental overrides into honors/advanced placement courses
- Be sure good grades are earned and not given
- Thank the teacher for all of their hard work
If your child’s report card isn’t so shiny:
- Request a conference with the teacher(s)
- Sit in and observe the classroom
- Purchase and/or look for workbooks or programs that can support your child’s learning