Step 1: Contact the Staff Member Closest to the Problem
Whether in the classroom, on the bus, or on the practice field, the quickest and easiest solution is usually found by working with the staff member most directly involved. Prevent concerns by:
If you call for an appointment to see your child's teacher(s), please provide advanced notice of the general nature of your concern? This allows the staff member to gather information that may relate to your problem or concern. If an in-person conversation is not possible, schedule a time to discuss your problem or concern via phone in detail.
- Talk with school personnel regularly, before problems are encountered.
- Know who your children's teachers are and how they can be contacted.
- Communicate both positive feedback and concerns.
The concern your child faces may be the result of an oversight or misunderstanding that can be easily corrected once brought to the attention of the staff member most directly involved.
Step 2: Present Your Concern to the Next Level
The principal at each building is responsible for supervision of staff within that particular building. The director of transportation supervises all school bus drivers. Each is an example of the next level of school personnel you should contact if the staff member closest to the problem has’t been able to satisfactorily resolve your problem or concern.
Their ability to help will be improved if you share the steps you’ve already taken with the staff member closest to the problem. Take time to openly share with them the reasons why you feel uncomfortable dealing directly with the person who is closest to the situation.
Supervisory personnel will rarely have access to the information they need to be of immediate assistance and working through them will often require additional time.
Step 3: Talk with the Superintendent of Schools
Sometimes all best intentions can't solve a problem. If you've taken the problem to the next level but still haven't achieved a satisfactory outcome, the superintendent of schools is the next place to go.
Allow advance planning for a meeting with a superintendent.
Step 4: Contact your School Board Members
School board members are elected to represent the interest of all parents and district residents; therefore, you should always feel free to share your point of view.
School board members do not, however, have direct authority in day to day operations. All authority is the result of official actions by a majority of the board at meetings open to the public.
The board's primary responsibility is to make policies that guide the school district. Any change in policy requires two readings at two separate public meetings, a procedure that often takes two or more months.
Some policy changes may require substantial public input and consultation with the school district's attorney, often increasing the time required for the board to respond.
When to contact a board member:
A Board Member may take one or all the following actions:
- After other means to solve a problem have been tried.
- When a policy is being enforced but you believe it results in bad consequences.
- When you believe a policy isn't being enforced.
- When policies or procedures are not enforced fairly for all.
- Informally discuss the issue with the superintendent or other administrators to consider whether rules or policies could be changed.
- Request the board review the specific policies that relate to the situation.
- Propose new policies for the board's consideration.