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“Good teachers are the reason why ordinary students dream to do extraordinary things.” – Anonymous

It is back to school time, again. Parents are busy preparing their children for the academic year, while holding on to the last days of summer vacation.

It is a time of anxious anticipation and excitement. Parents are busy making sure their children have the supplies and academic preparation they need. Students are wondering: Will they be in classes with their best friends? Will they have a nice teacher?

Everyone is hoping for a good school year, and much of that will depend upon the teachers to which our students will be assigned. Although some parents feel they should not intervene or make special requests in terms of who is the best-fit teacher for their child, in recent times more parents are feeling the need to become involved in the process.

In many of our public schools, parent involvement is welcomed, especially when parents have helpful insight into their child’s learning style. Having a good or bad teacher can greatly impact the success of the student.

According Michelle Rhee, former schools’ superintendent in Washington, D.C., “Students who get two or three strong teachers in a row improve their performance despite their backgrounds, while those stuck with a series of weak teachers may never recover.”

It is no wonder why parents are making it their mission to become involved in their child’s public education. Specifically, parents are considering the experience level and background of their child’s teachers.

“It is important to me that my child’s teachers be well-qualified because teachers have a great deal of influence on their students,” said Paula Hyman, a teacher in South Palm Beach, as well as a mother of a 12-year-old. “What matters more than a teacher’s previous experience, is the teacher’s philosophy on education and their knowledge of the subjects they are teaching.”

Cultivating teacher-student compatibility is an involved process that takes months of collaboration between educators and school administrators. It is important that parents who want to be involved are also educated about their child’s learning style, because a favorite teacher for one student may not be the best match for another.

Overall, what is essential for student success in school is that everyone works together for common goals and is supportive of one another, parents, teachers and students.

“Parent involvement at school and encouragement at home help students feel motivated to learn in the classroom. If the parent, teacher and student are all on the same page, then the student will be able to thrive,” Paula said.

One fact everyone agrees on is that great teachers have a significant impact on a student’s attitude towards school and on his life long success.

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