Each year, parents across the country volunteer at their child's school in a welcomed effort to help the teachers from whom our children learn so much. However, in order to be the type of volunteer that schools look for and ask to return, there are certain guidelines that parents must follow. There are other ways to participate in your child's education, but if you are eager to become a school volunteer, follow these .
1. Be Dependable
If you work a crazy schedule, don't promise to volunteer in a classroom a certain day each week and then back out repeatedly. It isn't fair to the students or the teachers. Make volunteering a priority on your to-do list and schedule your days when you know you can be there on time.
2. Be Professional
You may be a volunteer, but schools are a place where people work and learn. Turn off your cell phone, pay attention to the children, and refrain from talking with other adults during a class lesson. Everything you do and say has an effect on the children. Take seriously the job of volunteering.
3. Be Fair
If you volunteer in your child's class, don't focus all of your attention on her. You are there to work with all of the students, so try to pay equal attention to them without showing favorites.
4. Keep Quiet
While you are volunteering, you may learn facts about other children's grades or behaviors. Please keep this to yourself. The school may even ask you to sign a confidentiality agreement. Talking to others about a child's problems or school record is inappropriate.
5. Keep Safe
Please follow all safety rules put out by the school. Even if you disagree with them or think the rules are unreasonable, you are on school grounds and need to abide by school rules. Remember, you are setting an example for the students.
6. Show Respect
You can volunteer in your child's classroom even if you aren't too fond of the teacher. Demonstrate respect, do not undermine the teacher, follow her rules, and complete your assigned tasks. You are there to help her, not to make her job harder.
7. Dress Well
You are not cleaning your house or going to the beach. Dress appropriately and professionally. You will be spending the day with the children, which means you could be doing anything. So dress accordingly — comfortable, but respectful and more on the conservative side.
8. Know the Law
Before you volunteer, learn the local and state procedures, policies, and regulations regarding volunteers.