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Electronic Journals, termly reports and parent afternoons


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As a setting we have introduced electronic journals, I would think they all work fairly similar, Keyperson uploads photo/observation linked to curriculum, parents can access what we enter and also add their own photo's comments.

My question is what do other settings do about termly reports/parents afternoons. We have always either provided a report laying out next steps and achievements, parents admitted to not always bothering to read them! We have tried parents afternoon when a parent had a specific time to meet with their child's key person talk about progress and look through their books, many a time I paid staff to be there and parents didn't turn up!

If we have a parents afternoon will parents want to look through their online journal with us? We have one tablet between two staff so that would take some working out and they would only see what they can see at home, or do we provide a report which will no doubt go in the bin but is time consuming and we are trying to cut back on paperwork with the electronic journals!

Hope this all makes sense! I could print a report from the electronic journal, but at 17 pages per child and over 40 children it would be expensive and time consuming!

What do other settings do?

 

Many Thanks

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Hi Kristina. Why is your report 17 pages?

 

We have Tapestry and we write progress summaries twice a year which we share with parents. I send out an e-mail to parents letting them know the summaries are ready to read (they can read them online) and all key workers invite parents to talk to them about their child's develoment. We divy it up, so one key worker might say to two of her parents, are you able to come a few minutes early to discuss the summary, or could you stay tomorrow when you drop off? It's a juggle over a couple of weeks, but works for us.

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We use 2simple for our learning journals but we do print them out because the children love to sit and read/ look at them independently.

It is these we show to parents when we share a learning summary at the end of each term.

 

I think generally parents are happy with knowing that their child is where they re supposed to be developmentally but they do love to see their journals as many children don't talk to their parents about what they have done during the day!

 

Because we share a termly summary, the report we do at the end of each school year is very light and a short celebration of each child.

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We have had mixed success with parent's meetings - opted for evenings to give the working parents the chance to come in - basically send out a letter giving them the date and an option of times over a 2 hr period - or less if we have less children - basically allowing 10 mins for each keyperson. They pick their 3 preferred times and I return the letter with their allocated time, timetabling means I don't have staff hanging around or parents waiting for hours. This has worked well but it really does depend on the parents - one term I did cancel as only 4 parents replied so I was honest and gave them the reason - we saw those 4 at a mutually convenient time.

I do print a summary to show parents - not the whole document as we encourage them to access that more regularly on line.

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We have on line journeys too and we have started to offer a rolling parent meetings which are more 'in the moment' and therefore more relevant to the everyone concerned. This is working extremely well for all..... basically the parents of the children that are the 'focus' for the week are told and invited to share information that may help us 'plan' in the moment ideas for their children. Then after the week has finished the parents can read what we have said during the week about their child and we at that point we ask if they would like a meeting with the key person to discuss what was observed.

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Thank you for your replies, think we are going to provide parents with a simple written summary of what their children have achieved that term and what we are looking at next term, and inform them that if they want a meeting to arrange with their individual key person. It's always hard as we find some parents prefer a face to face meeting and some prefer a written report!

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Thank you for your replies, think we are going to provide parents with a simple written summary of what their children have achieved that term and what we are looking at next term, and inform them that if they want a meeting to arrange with their individual key person. It's always hard as we find some parents prefer a face to face meeting and some prefer a written report!

We dont have online journals, however, this is the way we do our summary with parents. It works, those parents who want to have a chat do so with the knowledge of the report in hand and others just want the report and to see the learning journey.

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