Head of School’s Weekly Message
October 28, 2022
Dear UA Families,
Hope you were able to adjust to the quick change in the weather and a five-day week after many short ones!
This week at UA has highlighted again the integral role of home-school partnership in student growth and community building. The pandemic has had a big impact on home-school dynamics which is still evolving; one of the most important lessons we as educators learned from this shift was to constantly check out new perspectives and possibilities. At UA there exists a strong culture of family engagement which manifests itself regularly throughout the year. While there is still opportunity for growth, we are committed to creating effective systems for ongoing reciprocal communication and follow-up.
Thank you to all of you who participated in the Parent-Teacher conferences this week. One way that educators and parents build partnership is by getting to know one another and providing feedback during those conferences. Parent-Teacher conferences are our first reporting event in the academic year to communicate student learning with families. They will be followed by two formal written reports in December and March, interim self-reports for students in Grades 6-12 in February, student-led conferences or three-way conferences in April and final summative written reports in June. It goes without saying that communication about student learning is by no means limited to these reporting events.
We also witnessed some other wonderful forms of family engagement this week. In our Junior School, parents were leading lessons to teach our students about Diwali. Another parent addressed the Junior School Assembly to talk about Dia De Los Muertos celebration in Mexico. In inquiry-based learning, there is a big emphasis on learning from experts in the field as it creates an authentic learning experience for the students. Also, from a culturally responsive practice standpoint, learning first-hand from guest speakers of diverse backgrounds is a valuable asset that we are lucky to have at our school. We are always looking for more parent guest speakers and contributors and we would welcome all parents with an interest in sharing their skills and talents to add their information in the Community Talent Database!
Continuing with the theme of strengthening school-family partnership, we would like to ask you to give us feedback. We are aware that there can be a lot of communication from school. We are working towards streamlining this and would like to also ask you to carefully read the emails from school and add important dates or deadlines to a personal calendar. Enjoy your weekend.