Who out there is getting ready to start the new school year with a to-do list that is so long you can barely sleep at night? This SLP right here is one of them! :-) So while I was trying to cross off some of my to-do items to make my first day back on Monday less stressful, I thought I'd share a few things I made with you guys to either inspire your own creation, or in place of having to make these for your students/parents.
Few things are as important as making contact with parents at the start of each school year. We have an Open House the first week, so I am often able to meet new students' parents and say hello to parents I have already met through past IEPs of my students I have worked with the past school year. However, I also like to send home a parent welcome letter and a request for contact info home with students in their speech folders we set up during the first session of the year as yet another way of letting them know I am available to them.
In the past, I sent home a full page letter that was so text heavy, I imagined parents barely skimming it. Hey, I get it. I have kids of my own and the stack of stuff that comes at the beginning of the year is overwhelming. That is why I made mine a little more visually pleasing with only the highlights on it.
You can grab my welcome letter here. I always copy it and the next form on bright yellow paper so it gets seen!
My parent contact/info letter is available here. I know the blurb at the top of it may seem wordy, but last year, I had a really difficult time getting some of my parents to return phone calls and respond to numerous letters and attempts to get IEP meetings arranged. With back-to-back kids, Medicaid billing, IEP meetings, afternoon duty, etc.... I just didn't have much available time to keep trying up to ten different ways to get in touch with parents. So, I tried to give a little info on why I need to reach them, and that email is the quickest and easiest way to do it.
These forms may not work for your caseload needs, but I love to share what I have and I have really learned so much from what others do, so I hope these can help you in some way.
Keep working at that to-do list, and remember the most important to-do item is to take care of yourself so you can be there for your family and friends!