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Difficult Parent Teacher Conference: When they go OFF on you...

No matter how good your intentions are, there still might be a parent or two that show themselves to be harder to handle.

Here are some tips for when you encounter that parent

1. Listen first

Let them talking, with you saying nothing. This is hard but you can do it just listen your time will come.

2. Acknowledge their concerns

After listening, its important to know that their concerns have been heard and that you will address the problems with solutions and correct any thing that was misunderstood in a even and calm tone of voice.

3. Don’t be judgmental

Do not judge their point of view, instead use key words like "us, we, together, team" this will cause the parents to understand working together with you is the best way to solve any problem.

4. Keep lines of communication open

It hard to keep lines open when you feel disrespected but its for the best of the student and that is your focus. So even if you can not verbally talk with a parent who always wants to have an outburst with you, try email, text, or phone call or just leave a message. Sometimes text and email can be challenging due to interpretation of tones and how things are read or written, but its documentation that you have communicated to the parents and this also helps cover you as the teacher.

5. Seek advice and notify your Admin

Always talk with your Admin for advice and just to give insight to them about what is going on with this parent. Other teachers in the past may have had the same problem with the same parent.

6. Keep your Documentation

This comes in handy when they start to say you did not communicate with them if you have the proof you did. Write down dates and time you made phone calls, face to face, keep your call log, text messages, and emails. I will screen shot text messages and send them to my email just to always have a copy of them.

I hope these tips have helped you as they have helped me.

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