Virtual parent teacher conferences

Post-Pandemic, Let’s Keep Virtual Conferences

Word on the social media “street” among Chicago Public Schools parents and teachers suggests that virtual conferences were a big hit all-around. As a veteran of the traditional in-person conference, which usually involves a long hallway wait and not enough time to talk with a harried teacher, what I’m hearing sounds like a vast improvement.

Here are some up sides to virtual conferences: no need to get there, no hassles with parking, a scheduled appointment, no waiting. I don’t know if this is an issue in Chicago, but my colleague Erika Sanzi in Rhode Island was once unable to get a conference slot with one of her children’s teachers because there just wasn’t enough time to go around.

Parents and teachers I know are saying this is a pandemic-sparked change they’d like to keep. At the same time, I wonder if families with tech issues are as happy with virtual conferences as the parents and teachers who are happy to chat on social media about their virtual conference experiences.

What do you think?

Photo by Christina @ on Unsplash.

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Maureen Kelleher

Chicago Unheard blog manager Maureen Kelleher also serves as a senior writer and editor at brightbeam, a nonprofit network of education activists demanding a better education and brighter future for every child. Before joining the brightbeam team, she spent a decade as a reporter, blogger and policy analyst. Her work has been published across the education world, from Education Week to the Center for American Progress. A former high school English teacher, she is also the proud mom of a middle-schooler. Find her on Twitter at @KelleherMaureen.

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