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“Helping Your Child Learn”

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Parent tips from the Utah Education Association

Ready to Learn – Attendance, Tardies and Communication
By Kathy Christiansen, sixth-grade reading, writing and social studies teacher at Cedar Ridge Middle School, Hyde Park, Utah

“Students whose parents are involved in their lives have higher graduation rates and greater enrollment rates in postsecondary education.”* Those students can also experience more success during their public school years. Parents can encourage success in school when they encourage and expect their child to be at school, arrive on time, and get acquainted with their teachers.

Unless students are ill, they should be in school. So much learning takes place in the classroom with the teacher that when students miss a class, they miss valuable instruction time. This instruction cannot be made up outside of school and the student’s chain of knowledge ends up with a missing link. This can cause students to become discouraged or confused. School then becomes a chore.

Excessive tardiness also contributes to failure in the classroom. Being consistently late can quickly ruin the reputation of a student. Not only does it make the student appear irresponsible, but coming late, is discourteous. Being tardy interrupts teaching time and distracts both the teacher and students in the classroom. Encourage your child to be in his/her seat ready to learn when the bell rings.

Advise your child to occasionally visit with the teachers. Teachers tend to take more interest in those students they know. Remind students to make their visits short as they share their ideas or thoughts.

With just a few tips on proper conduct at school, your child can become a positive force in the classroom.

* A New Wave of Evidence: The Impact of School, Family, and Community Connections on Student Achievements 2002.