Parent conferences are a time of celebration and discernment too.
Educators seek to please all and meet the needs of many, and that's a challenging quest.
For example, sometimes tight adherence to curriculum expectations means that you aren't serving the children who need something different.
And at times, meeting high needs may mean that you miss some enrichment opportunities, and meeting high needs and enrichment may mean that the core gets left out.
Perhaps your teaching leans in a particular direction, and that's not the direction a particular student or family values.
As I think of the multiple needs, interests, and passions before me each day as I teach, like all teachers I try to give everyone a fairly equal share of the curriculum/learning emphasis.
It's important that parents regularly speak up, ask questions, and contribute to the teaching/learning--we need to hear from parents and students too about what they want and need.
We have many measures in place to gauge that, but sometimes those measures aren't enough.
So as I listen to the many parents and students express what's working and what could change for the better, I have to listen carefully and think about how I might revise the schedule to meet the needs expressed. On the other hand, no teacher can do all things, and our first charge is to be kind to children, engage them in the learning, and teach the program set in the best ways possible.
As I've stated many times, teacher's work is humbling work, and we're always learning something new as we aim to serve children and their families well.