Stapleton Back to School Nights Feature Record Low Number of Trivial Questions

back-to-school-nightBack to School night can be dreaded by parents. They often feel they must attend so teachers and other parents in the class believe they are responsible, committed parents. Sometimes, they have to leave work early, figure out an early or late dinner, and in some cases, get child care for the kids. For many of the parents, they have been through the same routine year after year, and in some cases, siblings have even had the same teachers. “The schools are pretty good about sending out information,” said Westerly Creek parent Greg Kinder. “Plus, the teachers are great about getting back to you when you have a question. If you read what they send, the back to school night really isn’t that important.” The most frustrating thing for parents is when their peers ask questions to which the teachers have already answered, or if it is a question which could have easily been taken offline, and not taken up everyone else’s time. “When someone raises their hand after a teacher asks, ‘any questions?’ I just sit there hoping no one raises a hand,” said Swigert Parent Joleen Halupnik. “What could you possibly be questioning that everyone is wondering? It’s only you needing to know this info. Please, email the teacher later, or ask them after class. The rest of us want to get out of here, drink a glass of wine, and hang out with our kids before they go to bed.”

And it’s not just the parents who don’t appreciate these random questions. “It takes everything I have not to be smug and say, ‘we’ve actually already covered that, and emailed it to everyone twice,’ said a local teacher who chose not to be identified. “For nine months, we are at our respective schools constantly. We don’t want to be there longer than we have to, especially if it’s wasting our energy answering irrelevant questions, or questions pertaining to a very specific situation with one student.”

For students and teachers alike, 2017 back to school nights seemed to be a success. “When the teachers got to the end of the presentation, and asked, ‘any questions?’, I cringed,” said Isabella Bird parent Bernie Davis. “But, to my shock and appreciation,” no one raised their hands. No one felt like they had to let the rest of the class know they ‘really’ cared. It was monumental.” Bill Roberts parent Pat Thompson noticed the same thing. “It was really remarkable,” said Thompson. “I have been to four of these, and never have I not had to listen to at least six unimportant or already covered questions. None this year. It was pretty amazing.” Although no official stats are kept, it’s pretty clear from the feedback from parents that this year experienced the lowest number of parent questions. I do have one question, however. Can we do it again next year?

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