Thinking about the back to school season far before you open your doors for the first day is the best way to create a smooth and easy transition for students, teachers and families. School board back-to-school planning ensures you’ve had the chance to identify any needs your families may have and that the school year starts off right. Listening to your teachers, your families and students, reviewing what worked (and what didn’t) in the past and implementing solutions that increase the safety, engagement and morale of your returning learners are a great start.
Your individual teachers likely have a plan for the first day already, take the time to check with them to see if there is anything you can do to support them. When you do this, you’ll either get details that will help you craft a seamless and successful experience or you’ll get the peace of mind that comes from knowing your faculty is prepared.
While many parents may hesitate to talk about their needs, most will respond to an anonymous survey. Craft a survey that asks parents what they need most, and you’ll end up with useful insights that are more truthful than you might get by asking in person. Someone asked face to face may not want to create conflict, but an anonymous survey can help parents open up.
What worked last year – and what didn’t? If you still remember that tangle of cars in the parking lot, the excited, but running students or the lack of preparedness, then you already have a good idea of what you need to address this year. Make a list of concerns and work out ways to ease each one. This is where school board back-to-school preparation gets practical. Sometimes something as simple as teachers in place in the hallway to help welcome kids and keep order in the morning can help set the right tone.
Every adult in your school should know what to do if something goes wrong and what procedures you want followed when it comes to accessing the school itself. The first day is often chaotic, with both parents and students wandering, so be ready to be on your toes safety-wise as the year begins.
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Sometimes, school board back-to-school work is hands-on! One of the best ways to help is to be present. Make it a point to connect with both students and parents on the first day of school. This is the opportunity to connect, welcome, engage and be seen. Your presence can also help with crowd control and directing students to their new classrooms. When you are on hand, you can see what is working and what still needs to be done and get ideas for the coming days and even the following year.
Back to school board ideas like listening to teachers and families, reviewing key procedures, and being present can all help ensure your school year launches the right way. It will set the tone for a successful back to school season. The efforts you make now to create a positive and engaging back-to-school experience will pay off in the long term and make it easier for you to serve the students and community in the coming year.
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