Simon Conlan
Leader of Learning Development

I have previously mentioned the importance of timely contact with subject teachers if a student or parent has concerns about academic progress. In a previous Newsletter I wrote the following:

Timely communication between parents and teachers is welcomed by OLMC staff, as a message received from a parent or guardian may alert a teacher to a student concern of which they are unaware. Examples of such concerns may be lack of clarity about the nature of a task, confusion as to materials that may be used in an assessment, especially one completed under test conditions, or confusion as to how the assessment task is to be submitted for grading.

When faced with concerns such as these, which left unaddressed can grow into daunting problems for students, timely contact with the subject teacher is essential. At OLMC we encourage students to approach their teachers when seeking clarification, however, at times the parent or guardian may themselves wish to make contact.

The point I wish to emphasise in making mention of this again is the value of a direct conversation between parent or guardian and the subject teacher, rather than contacting the relevant Pastoral Leader or Year Level/House Coordinator. It is certainly appropriate to direct wellbeing concerns to these teachers, but assessment and content-specific inquiries are always better directed to the subject teacher. A brief phone call or email to a subject teacher will more often than not clarify confusion about content or assessment, calm anxiety and provide reassurance, and also allow the subject teacher to suggest ways to address academic concerns.