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How to Become Connected With Your School Community

September 07, 2018
By The Siena School

Maybe your child is new to school or you feel distant from parents in the school community. Maybe you are well connected with your school’s community, but you want to learn how to make new families feel more welcomed. Regardless of your situation, here are some helpful ideas on how to get involved at school and build community with other families.

The first big event of the school year that families attend is typically Back to School Night. At this event you walk through your child’s class schedule and meet their teachers. While you are waiting to enter the classroom, why not introduce yourself to a nearby parent? There is a chance that their child is a classmate and might be a great resource for homework help.

If your school offers a Family Picnic Gathering, attend! This is a wonderful way to meet families who have been at the school for years. If you are a returning family, you remember how important this event was to help with the transition to a new environment. Make sure you introduce yourself to the new families and help them get engaged with the school’s community.

Consider attending parent association meetings as a way to meet new school members.  There is always time to network prior to the meeting and at the conclusion of the meeting. You will also gain valuable insight from the shared topic of the evening.

The carpool line is a fantastic way to meet school community members. If you arrive early in the lineup and are allowed to leave your car, please do so! Encourage other parents to get out of their cars too, weather permitting. This is a great way to build community with other parents on a daily basis.

Grade level parties are another means of introduction.  You may use the school directory to contact the parents of each student in your child’s grade and arrange a time and place to meet. Not enough room at your home to host the entire grade? You can always throw a party at a local park for free!

Another great way to get connected to the school community is to give. There are so many ways to give- time, monetary, advice, and appreciation to name a few.  You could provide a donation, volunteer for events, committees or help drive to a sporting event. You can also make sure your child’s teacher feels appreciated, not just during Teacher Appreciation Week.  Spread the good news about your school.  If you are seeing a difference share that news with others.  Our families remain the best referral source.

Lastly, you can volunteer to be a Grade Representative. This will definitely get you connected with every parent in your child’s grade. Grade Reps are a great resource to help you learn about activities related to just your grade.

The start of a new school year is a great time to make new friends and build a community with other parents at your child’s school. It does take effort and engagement to strike up a conversation with a parent that you don’t know, but your school’s community will grow and become a welcoming place for new families.