Tips for Reviewing the Midyear Report Card

By Huntington Learning Center

The school year has passed the halfway mark, which means it is report card time. Some parents and children dread this time of year, but it’s important to keep in mind that report cards present an opportunity to assess children’s strengths, weaknesses, progress and study skills, and get them back on track. Parents should open the lines of communication with their children and their children’s teachers and guidance counselors. They can then formulate a plan for the rest of the year to address any concerns.

Huntington offers parents these tips when reviewing the report card:

Focus on progress. Too often, parents jump to the letter grades and don’t spend time looking at much else. Review your child’s progress toward mastery of grade-level standards. How is your child growing this school year? Pay attention to progress indicators and benchmarks.

Effort matters most.  As a parent, you have a good sense of your child’s homework and school work efforts.    During report card time, look for marks and comments that highlight your child’s effort—and whether that effort is reflected in their grades, as it should be.

Look for common warning signs. Low grades are one problem, but keep an eye out for other common red flags, including any indicators that your child has poor study skills, lacks focus, struggles to keep up or has difficulty with essential skills like organization and time management. If you’ve noticed a change in your child’s demeanor and these kinds of issues are showing up on the report card, initiate a discussion with the teacher.

Content knowledge is just one measure. Yes, it is important to review your child’s grades on content knowledge in the core subjects, but in today’s education landscape, there are many other measures of students’ performance. Review the report card for comments and marks on your child’s higher-level thinking, problem-solving skills, comprehension and other abilities.

Attitude is everything. Children’s attitudes about school are very telling—and a child who seems indifferent or angry about school is likely dealing with low confidence and feelings of hopelessness. Pay attention to any comments from the teacher (and probe further during the parent-teacher conference) on your child’s motivation and overall attitude about learning and grades.

Report cards are a valuable tool for parents to gain a detailed understanding of how their child is performing in school. No matter what the midyear report card looks like, no problem is insurmountable. If your child’s midyear report card highlighted areas of concern, call Huntington. There is plenty of time to address and correct issues and help your child re-build their self-esteem and finish the year strong.


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