Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Confessions of a School Visitor pt. 1


Last school visit!  Confession?  I dread school visits and drive myself crazy worrying about them.  Why do I do this?  I don't know--they are wonderful every time. 

School Visits Part 1: Setting the Scene
The first year I was here I started in March, so I didn't do school visits that year (at that point I didn't even know how many schools there were).  Even though I skipped the visits, the SLP reading club sign-up increased that year by nearly 30 kids.  Last summer was my first experience doing the SLP promotional school visit, and it went well, but reading club sign-up only increased by seven.  So I'm wondering how effective those school visits actually are.  Let me clarify--they are definitely effective at building goodwill and community. The kids love it when I visit and I get great feedback from teachers, not to mention the great statistics to include in the annual report.  But how much does it impact the Summer Reading Program?

I have 14 schools in my district, plus a slew of individual 4K sites.  I offer schools the choice of getting k-5th grade together for an assembly of about 20-25 minutes, or visiting each class for about five minutes.  This year, several schools were just too busy to have me come.  I dropped off my schedule/letter to parents at all the schools, and did an equal number of assemblies/class-to-class visits.

This year, when kids sign-up for the SLP, I will be collecting data on which school they attend so I look at participation on a school by school basis--and hopefully see if there's any correlation between schools I did/didn't visit.

Part 2


  1. I tend to think promoting summer reading to teachers is as (more?) important than promoting it directly to the kids. Teachers have more influence and can also mention it in classroom newsletters and conversations with parents.

  2. I hope that School Visits are helpful!We actually [apparently] saw a lot of new kids this year so far, but then again it IS my first time!


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