At the beginning of the school year at Timpanogos Elementary School, every student could expect a visit at home from his or her teacher.
Principal Rosemarie Smith encourages the teachers at Timpanogos to make the home visits as a way to improve the partnership between home and the school. She reported to the Provo City School Board Tuesday that the home visits were very successful."It helped our teachers tremendously," said Smith. She said the teachers got to know the families and each child's particular situation in the first couple of weeks of school, rather than halfway through the school year.
School is dismissed at 1:30 p.m. the first two weeks to give teachers the opportunity to make the home visits. In the evening they visit parents who work.
The meetings take the place of a traditional back-to-school night. So far, Timpanogos has found the individual meetings a better way to open the communication between home and the school.
Besides getting to know the students, the meetings give the teacher, parent and child a chance to set goals for the year. The Student Education Plan is a way to make sure everyone is working together for the same goals.
Canyon Crest Elementary School Principal Carla Thompson said her school has a similar program but the parents meet teachers at the school instead so the interviews can be conducted in four days instead of over two weeks.
Canyon Crest has early release the first four days of school to allow time for the meetings. Thompson said the short first four days make a nice transition for students who have been on vacation all summer.
The school board agreed unanimously that the individual meetings are a good idea and encouraged their implementation districtwide.
The proposed goals for the Provo School District for the 1990-91 year were presented and approved unanimously. School Board President David G. Weight said setting goals "is the lifeblood of any organization."