Friendly Hints to Help Parents Survive Ninth Grade
Be involved in your child's academic program of study.
Make sure that your child is challenged and taking courses now that will help meet future goals. Math course selection is vital and the single most important class decision for the ninth-grade year. Middle school math teachers will work with the high school teachers and counselor to make sure your child is appropriately placed for math.
Get your child involved in a positive activity...but don't overextend.
Research says that students who are involved in an activity, club, sport, music, etc., are much more likely to have a positive high school experience and get better grades than students who are not involved.
Know your child's friends.
Research says that when a teenager is faced with a critical decision, the influence of peers (positive and negative) and parents/families make the difference.
Register for Parent Portal.
This enables you to track your student's attendance, grades, discipline, and more right from your computer.
Don't allow your child to get lost in the shuffle.
In a large school, a student can get lost or fall through the cracks. When a student makes positive connections with adults (teachers, guidance counselors, coaches, etc.), it stops this from happening.
Remember that all teenagers (including straight-A students) need proper supervision.
This supervision includes online supervision and supervision of technology (cell phones). Remember, good kids make mistakes too. Your child should always know that you love him/her, but make sure he/she knows your expectations. Know where your child is and who they are with all the time.
Get to know your child's teachers and guidance counselor.
Stay in positive contact with the teachers and don't be afraid to ask for help. Remember that an email is a great tool for quick information, but it's not such a great tool for dealing with more difficult issues. Don't fight the small battles for your child...keep things in perspective.
Get involved in school yourself.
Successful students often have involved parents who visit the school, attend functions, join the athletic/band boosters or serve on advisory councils or offer to help with clubs/organizations. Parents who are involved stay in the know, and they use this information to support their children and the school.
Register your student in the A+ Program.
The A+ Program allows students to earn free tuition to a Missouri Community College by meeting certain basic requirements during the high school years: average grades (2.5 GPA), 95% attendance, good citizenship, and 50 hours of tutoring younger students. While many will aim for a 4-year college, we believe all students, at the minimum, should have a goal of high school PLUS some higher education.
Start discussing post-high school plans with your student.
It is never too early to have a vision for after high school. To go along with that vision, each student should have a plan of action. Schedule a visit with your student's counselor to develop a 4-year high school plan and to explore college, career, and military options.