Conference scheduling disaster. Again.

For whatever reason, my kids’ school has an extremely inefficient method of signing up for conferences. Conferences which are almost 2 months away I might add.

Yesterday was my kids’ back to school night (yep, a month after school has started). This was me:

Enter 1st grade room. Start to look at Marvel Girl’s work, then I realize “Oh no! I have to sign up for conferences.” Run over to the conference sing up and write name for Monday at 5:55.

Run to the other side of the building. Go to 4th grade room. Push past parents and rudely insert my name on the last Monday evening time slot. A parent I pushed past moaned since I took the slot she needed. Realized I’m actually friends with this parent. Also realized it was for Monday at 5:55. The exact. same. time. as other conference. Tell her she can have the slot (act like I’m doing her a favor, when in reality I can’t be 2 places at once). Take a time slot for Tuesday at 5:55. Tell another friend to let The Flash know that I really am going to come back and see his classroom!

Run back to 1st grade. See that time slots right before and right after the 5:55 time slot are already taken. Write down name in closest time slot available (6:45). Tell husband and Marvel Girl I’m going to 4th grade.

Run back to 4th grade. Check times again to make sure they don’t overlap. Put into the calendar. Realize husband can doubtfully sit at the school for 1.5 hours without writhing in pain. Complain to 4th grade teacher. Complain to parents around me. Complain via email to others.

Back to school night over. I leave having only been stressed out and with upset kids since I couldn’t concentrate on the “tours” they were supposed to lead me on. I haven’t socialized with my friends; in fact, I’ve been quite rude to them. And I haven’t spoken to the kids’ teachers.

The school where I work has a staff meeting in which conferences with interpreters are set up. Then sibling families are set up back to back. Then families with one kiddo are inserted into left over slots. It seems to work well. Please tell me that most schools have more efficient conference scheduling that my kids’!

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  1. Nope, sorry, not here. I have to make sure I’m first in line at the school office to sign up for parent/teacher conference so I can get all four back to back. (At least I can sign up in the one place!) Usually, though, teachers are running late (or early) and I end up having to wait around for ages anyway.

    And what makes it all the more annoying is that the teachers – at least one very year – says something like “Oh you really didn’t need to come in. It’s always the parent we DON’T need to see who make the effort to come. The parents we actually do want to talk with don’t bother making an appointment.”

    And by then I feel like ‘why bother?’ Yet I do it all over again the next time.

    Anyway, hope your conferences are worth all the effort.

  2. Anonymous says:

    It sounds like you have a great system at your school. We struggle with this at our school as well. I do think the sign up sheet has the potential to really work, though, if everyone has a way to communicate (call another teachers room if asked, for example). We usually send a note or make a call suggesting a time, and then reschedule if the parent can’t make it. Maybe I will suggest adding a checkbox for siblings after reading your post.

  3. My school last year had a great system where the office scheduled the families together and then the one-child families filled the gaps. If parents couldn’t make the given time, they rescheduled with the office, so they could have groupings unless they specifically said they were okay coming back multiple times or waiting.

  4. Our school does siblings back to back, too. It’s a decent system. Yours sounds wretched–kind of like how we used to register for classes in college!

  5. That’s horrid. I’m not sure what the schools around here do. I tell my kids that since we homeschool, when mommy talks to herself…that’s a parent teacher conference. It sure would be nicer if their teacher (mom) could meet with their parent (dad) for coffee. This year I realized that we’ve only got 1 more year…then it’s legal to leave our 3 home alone since the oldest can watch his siblings. I’m counting down that year.

  6. Good grief, that sounds horrid! And you’re right. Not very efficient.
    We used to send in a block of time that would work for us and then the office would assign times for us with all the kids. It was awesome because when you have multiple kids at the school they arrange them to have coordinating times one right after the next. Very efficient.
    This year they switched to sending out a sign up Genius and we are signing ourselves up. We’ll see how that works.

    By the way, what the heck has happened. You have been in my feed forever but I haven’t been notified of ANY of your new posts in forever. I just kind of thought you had stopped blogging a while back. What is my PROBLEM!!! I’m so glad you are here! I am re-entering you into my feeder again and hoping it works better. 🙂

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