By Emily Marston Middle School teacher Chair of the Accreditation Steering Committee
Think you know everything that we teachers and staff do at TPS? Teach, advise, create program, write academic reports, pursue professional development, coach sports, give music lessons.
For the past year, while all that has been going on, faculty and staff – with the participation of board members – have undertaken an exhaustive (and sometimes exhausting!) self-study in preparation for a formal reaccreditation visit on October 23-26 by a team from the Pennsylvania Association of Independent Schools (PAIS).
These were the main characters in Tuesday's Monthly Constitutional, presented by UPenn classical studies professor Campbell Grey. Cam's lecture was so engaging that everyone in the room – 8th graders and teachers alike – wanted to enroll in his class at Penn!
Back-to-School Night (BTSN) is an exciting event for parents and teachers. And, in this day and age, it can provoke undue anxiety as well. Over the years, I have spoken with many independent and public school parents about BTSN. When I have asked them what they hoped to get out of the evening, their answers have ranged from “I want to know what my child does every day” to “I want to understand my child’s curriculum and the teacher’s methodology” to “I just want to meet my child’s teachers and get to know them a little.”
At The Philadelphia School we believe that Back-to-School Night is an opportunity to meet a little of each of those expectations. We aim to outline some of the big picture curriculum and methodology children will experience, help parents get to know the core classroom and specialist teachers (as much as you can get to know anyone in one evening), and instill confidence in parents that we care deeply about the experience each and every child has each and every day.
Parents are important partners/co-contributors in the success of Back-to-School Night. Here are a few tips for making the most out of this year's experience.