Thanks so much for stepping up to be a room parent!
You are an important part of how we create community at McKinley and how we
engage parents. Just being a smiling face, willing to answer questions for others,
makes McKinley feel like a welcoming place and makes families feel at home.
As an extra bonus, your dedication here says a lot to your kids. If school matters
to you, it will matter to them. When you give of yourself to their school, it reminds
them that their education matters, and that they matter. Thanks for volunteering!
Room Parent FAQ
What is a Room Parent?
At McKinley, the PTA uses room parents to disseminate information, rally
volunteers, gather info and encourage community. Some teachers make further
use of room parents to help with classroom parties, volunteer needs, Scholastic
book orders, and other activities, depending on the needs of the teacher and the
availability of the room parent.
So what am I really going to DO?
At a minimum, room parents attend the meetings so they know what’s going on,
forward emails to their class’ parents, and organize teacher gifts (or ensure that
someone in the class is handling that). Beyond that, if you want to, some room
parents help organize the end-of-year BBQ, help the teacher with class parties,
and even organize outside, inclusive gatherings like play dates in the park for the
whole class. Some teachers like to make use of parent volunteers in the classroom
and others don’t; Please take the lead from your teacher and if you have time to
offer additional assistance to them, that’s great!
Is this a one person job?
Each classroom needs at least one room parent, but it's even more fun when you
have two or more people who can share the job. Maybe one person is great at
sending out the PTA emails, but another is on campus regularly to talk to parents
in person. Or maybe one has a crazy job in winter, but more time for spring
activities. It's a great job to share and a lovely way to be involved in your child's
school. That said, it is perfectly doable by one person. I’ve done it both ways and
had a good time either way. And always remember, we are all just volunteers, so if
you are running into problems let me know and we will work it out.
Do I have to volunteer in the class / be available during the day?
Room parents don’t necessarily volunteer in the classroom. We hope you can stick
around for an hour after drop off on the six Thursdays when we have room parent
meetings. If you can’t, hopefully you have a co-room parent who can make it and
keep you in the loop. If no one from your team can attend the meetings, please
confer with Nat.
Do I have to use email?
A lot of what room parents do is send emails to update their classes. It usually
works well if one person on the team is designated as the ‘email person’ who will
regularly pass along the PTA emails (we will give you what you need to send so
you don’t have to start from scratch). But not every person on the room parent
team needs to be an email maven.
How will I reach out to the parents in my room?
Next week in your Wednesday Folder you should receive a class roster with the
email addresses of those parents who have released their information. If you have
families who have not shared their info, you might ask them (possibly through a
note) if you could have their email for class purposes. If they don’t share their
email or don’t have email, talk with Area about how you might get flyers into
those families’ homework or Wednesday Folders. Messages we send you will
include Spanish translations. We always want to strive to be inclusive and
reach every family.
2) Never use the list for non-room parent purposes -- we are only authorized
to use those emails for classroom and PTA purposes.
When are the room parent meetings?
We hope you’ll enjoy being a room parent!
Please feel free to contact Nat with any questions