Middle Years Education in Manitoba: Improving Student Engagement

Resources for Parents

Parent-Teacher Meetings*

Parent-teacher meetings provide a valuable opportunity to get to know your child’s teachers better and to learn how your son or daughter is doing in school. If you have any questions or concerns, write them down, and bring them to share with the teacher. The teacher will do his or her best to answer your questions, but may also refer you to other school members, such as the principal or guidance counsellor, for more information or help. Parents who work in partnership with teachers and the school form a strong foundation for students’ learning success.

Here are some questions you can ask at the parent-teacher meeting:

  • Does my child participate in school activities?
  • Does my child have an opportunity to be on a team or in a club, even though my child’s skills may not be as strong as those of other students?
  • How will my child’s learning be evaluated?
  • My child seems to be having problems in certain areas (ex: mathematics, language arts, group work). What are you doing at school to help my child improve in these areas? What can we do at home to help?
  • My child seems to know many of the concepts being taught and seems to be finishing class work too quickly and easily. What are you doing to help my child be challenged and excited in learning?
  • What sorts of things do you do at school to encourage creative thinking and expression? How can I help develop my child’s creativity?
  • How self-directed and independent is my child? Does my child pay attention in class and follow directions?
  • Does my child use class time well?
  • Does my child have a chance to help others in class or at school?
  • Does my child work well in a group?
  • Does my child get along well with other students in class and in the school?
  • What can I do if my child is being bullied or teased at school?
  • What can I do if my child is bullying or teasing others?
  • Can you recommend books for my child to read at home?
  • What is the best way to contact you if other questions or concerns come up?
  • What can I do at home to help my child be successful at school?

Student-Led Conferences

Student-led conferences are offered in addition to or in place of parent-teacher meetings in many Manitoba Middle Years classrooms. These conferences allow students to take a leadership role in sharing their learning goals, achievements, and challenges with their parents. Teachers spend time preparing students for the conferences and are available during conferences to support the students and parents in any questions or concerns that arise.

*Source: Manitoba Education and Early Childhood Learning. The Middle Years: A Parent’s Companion. Winnipeg, MB: Manitoba Education and Early Childhood Learning, 1988.