Parents' Guide to the First Report Card

By Huntington Learning Center

The first marking period of the year does not have to conjure up stress for children and their parents. "The report card should be viewed as an opportunity to identify any potential trouble areas, address any issues and set goals with your child," advises Eileen Huntington, co-founder of Huntington Learning Center. As the first academic review of your child's school performance this year, Huntington suggests that parents keep in mind the following when they receive their child's fall report card:

The teacher can offer more in-depth information. Grades should be digested with the help of a teacher, who can provide more insight into and specifics about your child's academic strengths and weaknesses, behavior in the classroom and more. Together, you can identify the areas where your child may need additional support and develop a plan to provide just that—at home and in the classroom.

Poor organization and study skills may hamper a student's performance. Sometimes a child has the ability to learn and comprehend, but he or she is disorganized and unskilled at managing his or her time. If your child is getting bad grades, talk about his or her homework, study routine and approach. Perhaps a few small changes may help your child become a more effective and efficient student.

Last year was last year. It's a whole new school year, with more demanding classes and concepts for your child to learn and different teachers who may approach subjects differently. This means that the challenges that confront your child may be completely different this year. Do not be surprised if your child brings home a lower-than-expected grade in a subject that did not cause trouble last year, and remind yourself that no matter what troubles present themselves, you and your child can overcome them together.

Some problems don't go away on their own. Certain issues need correction sooner rather than later. If your child does not acquire certain "building block" skills in math or reading that are essential for him or her to grasp more difficult and in-depth concepts, for example, he or she will continue to struggle in those subjects. Your child's teacher can advise whether your child would benefit from tutoring that will help him or her close those skill gaps as quickly as possible.

Huntington reminds parents that perhaps the most important thing to keep in mind when grades are declining is that the action taken is what really counts. "Inevitably, issues will arise throughout your child's education," says Huntington. "However, if you stay optimistic and calm and take steps early, you can overcome those issues before they grow into major problems."

About Huntington

Huntington is the tutoring and test prep leader.  Its certified tutors provide individualized instruction in reading, phonics, writing, study skills, elementary and middle school math, Algebra through Calculus, Chemistry, and other sciences. Huntington offers prep for the SAT and ACT, as well as state and standardized exams.  Huntington programs develop the skills, confidence, and motivation to help students succeed and meet the needs of Common Core State Standards.  Founded in 1977, Huntington’s mission is to give every student the best education possible. Learn how Huntington can help at For franchise opportunities please visit


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