Washington Heights Expeditionary Learning School (WHEELS) is a middle and emerging high school located in Washington Heights, New York. This video describes their approach to Student Led Conferences (SLCs).
WHEELS considers the relationship between students’ families and the school to be of paramount importance. At three times during the school year, the school invites students and their families to attend formal conferences during which report cards are given to families. At WHEELS, Student Led Conferences (SLCs) replace the traditional parent / teacher conference. SLCs are attended by the student, parent/guardian, Advisory class teacher (know as “Crew Leader” or “Crew Advisor” in Expeditionary Learning Schools), and other adults the student would like present. The Crew leader facilitates the meeting, but the student is in charge of the conference.
Some of the benefits of student led conferences include:
•Increased level of student accountability for school work. Students know that they will need to show, talk about and defend their work three times per year.
•Increased level of family involvement in school. Families know that they need to attend three conferences per year.
•Built-in mechanism for the school to communicate with families regarding academic progress. The School expects that all (100%) families, students and teachers participate in all conferences.
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