You’re busy, and want to get involved in your child’s school. Where should you start?

Dr. Angela Wilkinson, Sunrise Elementary Principal.
Dr. Angela Wilkinson, Sunrise Elementary Principal.

It’s been said that parents are their child’s first, and most important, teacher — a truism reinforced by research showing how important a strong school-to-home connection is to student success.

But what does it mean to be involved in your child’s education? Parents are busy and can’t do it all: check the backpack, monitor all of their children’s daily assignments, help with homework, attend school events, and volunteer in the classroom. So, where should they start? What questions should they be asking? How can they make the most of parent-teacher conferences? What barriers, fears, or misunderstandings get in the way of parents and teachers working together to help kids thrive?

Last year, Connect Canyons interviewed some PTA representatives to discuss the many ways families can connect with their neighborhood school.  This year, we decided to get the perspective of a school principal: Sunrise Elementary Principal Dr. Angela Wilkinson.

Speaking from her perspective as a career educator, Dr. Wilkinson shared some of the ways Canyons District schools are building bridges with families. During the pandemic, for example, schools found ways to host parent-teacher conferences remotely, which actually helped boost participation. It’s a time-saving innovation that schools are still putting to use this year.

Dr. Wilkinson also offered great insight into how parents can focus their efforts, even touching on questions parents should be asking to understand how their children’s learning is progressing so they can better support learning at home.

After all, it’s one thing to help with homework. It’s another to know that your child is missing foundational concepts — such as memorizing “math facts” (addition, subtraction and times tables) — so you can spend your time on what matters most.

“We appreciate parent involvement in the schools. We couldn’t do it without our parent volunteers,” Dr. Wilkinson said. “Last year with our not being to have volunteers in the buildings [due to state COVID19-related health protocols], it’s made you appreciate it even more.”

CSD Makes Plans to Create Own Social-Emotional Learning Curriculum

Canyons Superintendent Dr. Rick Robins at the Tuesday, Sept. 21 meeting of the Canyons Board of Education announced an administrative action to suspend the use of the current social-emotional curriculum being used in Canyons District elementary and middle schools.

While reiterating his support of social-emotional learning, Dr. Robins stressed that the plan isn’t to abandon the teaching of crucial life skills and character traits, but to improve upon the curriculum being used in Canyons’ schools.

The current curriculum, called “Second Step” will be on hold until Tuesday, Oct. 5, when Board members and the Administration can fully discuss the issue after it has been appropriately noticed on a public-meeting agenda.

At that Board meeting, the Administration intends to propose a timeline for the creation of Canyons’ own curriculum by in-house instructional experts.

“Since the onset of the pandemic, with the Board’s and Administration’s steadfast commitment to in-person learning, Canyons District has prioritized not only the physical safety of students but also their social and emotional needs,” Superintendent Dr. Rick Robins says. “This past year has brought new challenges with the spread of new COVID-19 variants and shifting health guidance. But our goal of supporting students’ overall wellness has been consistent throughout, and something I continue to wholeheartedly support.”

The philosophy behind social-emotional learning, which is required by Utah State Board of Education rule, is to engender trust, respect, and unity. But the District is finding that the Second Step curriculum, although supported by many, has links to information that may not meet the community’s expectations and needs.

Pending Board approval, Robins hopes to have an in-house social-emotional curriculum completed by the end of winter break or early January.

More information about CSD’s next steps will be made available after decisions are made about the SEL curriculum that will be provided in CSD schools.

Upcoming Parent Teacher Conferences

Albion Middle School will be holding Parent-Teacher Conferences on September 21 and 22.  Both nights will begin at 4:00 pm.  

September 21, 2021 will be an open-house format with drop-in conferences from 4:00 pm – 7:30 pm. Core teachers (math, science etc.) will be in the gym and elective teachers will be in the cafeteria. Please join us on September 21, 2021 if you would like to meet face-to-face. You will not need to make an appointment.

September 22, 2021 will be phone/virtual-only conferences.  Conferences will be held 4:00 pm – 7:30 pm.  You can sign up via Skyward to meet with each teacher individually.  Teachers will contact you by phone at your scheduled time. If you would like to meet with the teacher virtually (via zoom or Google Meets), you must let them know in advance, in an email. Again, to arrange a conference with a teacher on Wednesday,  you  on the 22nd you will need to make an appointment via Skyward.

If neither of these dates work for you, you are welcome to contact individual teachers and set up times to meet or speak to them about your student. PTSA will be selling Memory Books alongside our Media Center’s Scholastic book fair during this time. All proceeds benefit the school so please consider stopping by! 

 

Sign-Ups for Parent Teacher Conference will begin on September 16 at Noon.

 

Parent Conference Instructions-Skyward 

Login in to your Skyward Family Access

If you have more than 1 student in Canyons School District Schools, choose All Students

 

  1. On the left side click the Conferences tab

Note: 

  • Only one appointment can be schedule per teacher per student
  • If guardians maintain separate households, they must login separately to schedule individual conference times for their student
  • If you have more than one student, the system will allow you to schedule them at the same time with two different teachers, however a warning will appear because this will double book you 
  1. Click All Conferences next to the student’s name for whom you wish to schedule a conference. 
  2. Click Select a Time 
  3. Choose the time you want and click Select next to that time (Status for that time slot must be open or select option will not appear) 
  4. A Window appears showing the appointment information. Click save.
  5. You will receive a confirmation email. You will also receive  reminder email before your scheduled appointment. 
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