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    #45798 - 04/27/09 09:14 PM Letter to School advice
    bayareamom Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 02/08/09
    Posts: 12

    I need some advice and even samples for how to write a advocacy letter for my DD for Kindergarten placement.

    Situation--> After quite a bit of agonizing and analysis, we have decided on the public school route for our DD (4.5). Thankfully here in CA, the cutoff is Dec 1st, so she qualifies for K when she is not quite 5. Choosing public over gited private was in part because of a meeting I had with the principal of the public school that my DD would be going to who was very open to accomodating DD's learning requirements. She suggested that I write a letter explaining the skills, interests and learning style preferences so that they can place her appropriately. She was also pretty frank about teaching styles and personalities of the different teachers and was candid about the fact that not all teacher may be a good fit for DD. This is a large elementary schoolwith 8 sections of entering kindergarteners and 2 shifts. So it would be pretty easy for a child to get lost here. What should I include in the letter? Should I include her WIPPSI scores? I don't want to come across as a pushy mom even before we are in the school. Please advice..

    #45802 - 04/27/09 09:52 PM Re: Letter to School advice [Re: bayareamom]
    Penelope Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 04/27/09
    Posts: 5
    I am an elementary school principal and from my perspective I feel that it is helpful to know from parents some of the following things about their child:
    -special topics that interest your child, there may be a teacher with a particular passion that matches your child's interest.
    -what type of environment your child likes related to classrooms and teaching styles (e.g. low key, predictable, prefers routine or more spur of the moment, go with the flow)
    -include information about whether your child warms up to people quickly, is trusting or takes time to open up.
    -you may also want to include your vision of a successful K year for DD, what do you want for your child.
    As an educator I would appreciate having the WIPPSI scores, it can really speed up the 'discovery' phase of getting to know your child as a learner.
    I hope this helps.

    #45803 - 04/27/09 09:57 PM Re: Letter to School advice [Re: bayareamom]
    Val Offline

    Registered: 09/01/07
    Posts: 3296
    Loc: California
    My biggest piece of advice is to be sure they're going to do what they say/you think they're going to do. If something isn't written down, you don't have any guarantees. You don't want to have miscommunications, which are no fun for anyone.

    Example: What are your DD's approximate skill levels? If she's reading at, say, a 2nd grade level when she starts K, will the school be able to accomodate her? If so, what will they do, specifically?

    I think it's important to nail down details before you start at a school.

    Oh, my DD4 has a late August birthday and I'm hoping to start her in Grade 1 this fall.


    #45824 - 04/28/09 07:16 AM Re: Letter to School advice [Re: Val]
    BWBShari Offline

    Registered: 10/24/08
    Posts: 1167
    Loc: NM
    I would definitely include the results of her WPPSI. I would include a few samples of her works as well. Now is not the time to be low key. Be Pushy! The best thing you can do for your DD is to give her a good start.

    There is a difference between being pushy and just being obnoxious. We tend to want to keep things to ourselves so that we're not viewed as braggarts. But the school can't make an informed decision without information. You have to give them the facts and an overall "feel" for who your daughter is. The most important thing is to get the school to be flexible. Let them know that if something isn't working, you are open to change. They need to be as well.

    Good Luck and keep us posted!
    Mom to DS 10, DS 11, DS 13
    Ability doesn't make us, Choices do!


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