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Report Card Advice for Parents

Nov 21, 2017
Report card day can often be a stressful time for both parents and students. Parents facing a child’s poor report card may find themselves feeling disappointed by the results or apprehensive about the best way to discuss failing grades with their child’s teacher. Students can feel discouraged if they’ve been struggling to do better for a while, but they are just not able to make the grades.

Below are some simple tips parents can use to empower their child to bring home a report card that will make everyone proud of progress and accomplishments.

Communicate with your child.

Get help immediately if you see a problem.
Don’t fall prey to your child’s promise to do better. They may not be able to correct certain issues without help from the adults in their life.  

Establish a study plan with your child.  
Your child needs to develop regular study habits and to spend an adequate amount of time every day on doing homework and studying for tests. Be aware of your child’s assignments, and observe whether your student is using time effectively to tackle homework and study. Encourage him to put forth his best effort and to persevere.

Stay in touch with your child’s school counselor.
The link between home and school is vital. The school counselor can request periodic progress reports between grading periods, and set up conferences with teachers, parents and students when necessary.

Meet with your child’s teachers.
Keep an open line of communication with your child’s teacher. Explore other resources offered by the school such as tutors, homework centers, classes outside the normal school day or online subject support. The link between school and home is vital.

Be sure to keep report cards in perspective.
Remember that a report card is just one measure of how your child is doing at one particular time. While a report card is important, make sure you continue to motivate and encourage your child if they are doing well in other areas. Positive motivation from parents is a great way to build your child’s self-esteem and can lead to successful grades down the road.
Don’t wait until report cards are issued to talk to your child — by then, it’s too late. From the first day of school, make sure your child knows there will be a real conversation about school every evening — not just a half-hearted attempt at discussion and one-word answers.