March 16, 2020 is a day that I will always remember in my educational career. This day would be the first day of remote learning across the state of Arkansas which would last the entire 4th quarter. 9 weeks later, I am wrapping up the school year and taking a minute to reflect on the good, the bad, and the ugly.
As I try to identify the positives that I will carry with me one comes to mind first; the power of a positive phone call. As an educator I have had to make my fair share of phone calls, but I have not always made the time to start each year with a positive one for every student.
During this global pandemic I decided that I would not contact a single one of my ESL families about school work until I had a chance to just visit with them and see how they were doing. I wanted them to know I was here first and foremost for the well-being of their child. We could worry about academics after I knew the child was doing well. I have never had such positive reaction and strong parental involvement as I have had this quarter.
Now, I understand that parents had to be involved as their child was now doing school from home, but these phone calls really set the tone for the last 9 weeks. Each family understood I was there to come alongside them to help and not to just let them know all the areas they were lacking.
After this year I will make it a priority to always make that positive contact first. I recently accepted a job as an assistant principal and I believe I can continue this in my new role and hopefully encourage my team to join me in this quest!
Check out this graphic on tips for making positive phone calls.