Parent involvement in schools with Tracey Biebel - KPTV - FOX 12

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Parent involvement in schools with Tracey Biebel

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(KPTV) -

If you're a parent you may have experienced "mom guilt" or "dad guilt" at some point, but should you feel bad if you just can't make the time to volunteer in your kid's classroom now that school is back in session?

Family therapist Tracey Biebel from Practical Parenting in northeast Portland says working parents should not feel guilty about not volunteering all the time, but said they should try to help out at least three times during the course of the school year.

Biebel said in this day and age of overcrowded classrooms, teachers usually appreciate it.

She recommends that working parents offer to volunteer once a month if their work schedule allows.

“There are huge pros to it. One, you are helping the school, which is great, but the bigger pieces are you get a window into the classroom of your kiddo, so when you kid comes home and is talking about it, you know who they're talking about, you know why they are talking about it.” Biebel said. “You have a context for it, and that is more of a connection with your child.“

“It’s also more connection with your child’s teacher. And more understanding of what that day looks like and what that teacher’s style is,” she added. “It’s about connecting to the community in your school, too, and knowing more about that, because that is your child’s day-to-day community.”

One local educator we spoke with suggests asking your kid's teacher if there's a way you can help out from home in your off time.

She says teachers also appreciate it when parents offer to buy classroom supplies, snacks, treats or party supplies for class celebrations, as those costs now usually come out of a teacher's pocket.

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