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Dealing with Parents

All teachers and parents will have to deal with angry parents at some point in their careers. During periods of debate with parents, it is important for teachers to understand the point of view of the parents, as well as helping the parents see your point of view as a teacher. Parents only want the best for their children, and every once and a while parents refuse to accept that their child struggles in school.¹

One of the best ways to deal with parents is to keep detailed records of students that include dates, times, notes, and decisions.¹ It is also good practice to keep records of all of the communication that you have had with the parents in the past school year in order to show the parent that you keep in contact with them and that you care about their child’s success.¹

To be effective, parent involvement should be a partnership between the family and the school to assure that children are learning to the best of their ability.² Parents and the school should also make sure that students feel safe and supported, and that parents are well informed and involved in making decisions that affect their child’s school experience.²

Research shows that when parents and teachers work together everyone benefits. Students tend to earn higher grades, perform better on tests, attend school more regularly, and show a more positive attitude toward themselves and towards school.²

If a parent is new to the community, comes from another culture, or does not speak fluent English, they may feel overwhelmed by the prospect of conferencing with their child’s teacher or attending a school open house.²



1. Gruber, Barbara and Sue Gruber. 10 Tips to Deal with Difficult Parents Effectively. Retrieved from
2. Canter, Andrea. Parents and Teachers: Strategies for Working Together. Retrieved from

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High-Risk Parent Programs

Discuss one of the programs listed below. What does the program entail? Identify what you believe to be the most important components of your own parenting or interaction with children and then align them with the components of one of the programs. What model or combination of models would you be most comfortable using? What ar