EDUCATION: Bring back the parents’ evening

When I was at school, parents’ evenings were an expected and, at least, an annual event.

We went along with one or both parents in tow and faced the teacher who would spill the beans on how we behaved in school, and if we were making the grade or not.

There was an element of embarrassed squirming on my part when some grades did not meet my parents’ and the teacher’s expectations, but at least we all knew where we stood with my education.

How can it be that our local high school in Alnwick has never offered this to my children?

All they provide is what they define as a consultation day, which means the school is closed for a whole day to students (another day off for them).

We are given a 15-minute appointment with their form tutor which is in the middle of the day when most parents are working.

In addition, although the form tutor may know my children from registering them in class every day, they certainly do not have an accurate picture of what they are like, say in a practical science lesson, or debating in an English lesson.

I know I am not alone with complaining regularly about the fact we get little, or no face to face contact time with our children’s teachers.

In fact I can honestly say if I saw any of their teachers outside school, I would not know them from Adam, and my children have been in the school for five years.

Other local schools in Morpeth and Amble have parents’ evenings.

The response from the Alnwick high school has been that attendance at parents evenings is very low and the parents they actually want to see do not show.

Well, thanks for that, because of a few uninterested parents, those of us who want to support our children are given a raw deal.

They have also suggested that if we cannot make the appointment, then our children should attend it on their own.

All well and good, but the school buses do not run on consultation day (school closed, remember), and the return bus fare for a 15-minute appointment would be almost a tenner for us.

Now we are being inundated with news from the school about their future new building – which my children will not benefit from as they will have long gone.

However, can I please ask that consideration is given to reinstating the parents evening in the new school?

Name and address

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