One of the most essential, yet the most ignored book handed during the first day of class, is the student-parent handbook. It’s the Bible of the school which contains all the do’s and don’ts to survive one semester to another. However, despite its importance, only a few actually read its contents from cover to cover, and fewer understand what it says. So, if you want to learn how you can create a student-parent handbook that you can get the students and their parents to read, then read on to view our samples and get some tips!
FREE 10+ Student & Parent Handbook Samples
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10. High School Student and Parent Handbook
11. Formal Student and Parent Handbook
What Is a Student-Parent Handbook?
A student-parent handbook is a type of book that schools give to students and to their respective guardians or parents on the first day of class. In it are instructions, guidelines, tips, sanctions, roles, and responsibilities that students and parents have to adhere to. With the handbook, a student will be able to navigate the school system with ease. It has all the rules, including the attendance policy and disciplinary actions that a student will face. On the one hand, the handbook will also help parents know what they can do, such as the process of filing complaints and grievances to the administration.
How to Make an Efficient Student-Parent Handbook
According to Statista in their research about the reading habits of people in the US, Americans spend only a mere 7 minutes a day reading. And of course, the main reason for reading is for the sake of pleasure, specifically indulging in crime and thriller book genres instead of educational books. Now think of your students and their parents; they’re whole different generations that you have to engage and inform. So, what should you do to make sure that you are not going to be wasting your resources on a book that they’ll throw to the bin? Well, by keeping the following tips in mind as you create your student-parent handbook:
The student-parent handbook should not only be full of rules and policies of the school, but also questions and concerns that students and parents may have. You can add a FAQs section that will allow any reader to access answers to common questions. However, make sure that the answers get supplemented by the rest of the contents of the handbook, or in other pages allotted for more details and information.
Your readers are both students and parents, so you should use a language that’s easy to read and understand, but still professional. If you do have to incorporate jargon and rarely used words or terms, always add a definition or meaning. But, there are also some instances when a definition is unlikely to contribute to the entire purpose of a content. An example would be the list of slang words as part of the don’ts in your school disciplinary action policy. Of course, opt to not add definitions in each slang word, for it’s not necessarily useful.
Think of a student-parent handbook similar to a library; it has a lot of books, rules, information that you need to arrange. Now, imagine looking for a book yet knowing it’s not cataloged by the librarian; would you feel happy or outraged? Obviously, you’ll be outraged and be wasting time in searching for that book. That same thing will happen to any reader and user of your handbook if you fail to organize the categorize its contents. So, make sure that you have all related subjects in one section. For instance, if you will discussing rules about having pets and service dogs, then place them all, along with the sanctions, at the service animals on campus policy of your student-parent handbook.
A lot of things can happen within a single school year, such as the occurrence of a pandemic, war, strikes, and all other unexpected incidents. Keeping that in mind, you should also be ready for any changes that you have to implement in school, especially when it comes to updating the student-parent handbook. Would you have the same charity data retention policy if your school will no longer be associating or partnering with charity organizations? And would you not change your field trip policy and do’s and don’ts if your school will not permit field trips anymore? Of course, the answer is no; so, keep the contents of your student-parent handbook updated!
What’s the difference between a handbook and an instruction manual?
Instruction manuals are often used by companies who sell products and items intended for consumers to use. While handbooks can be used for all sorts of purposes. It contains more than just instructions since it can also be for indicating a background about the school, guidelines and tips, list of penalties and sanctions including what happens when a student drops classes, and various protocols, internal complaint procedures, and parent-teacher association or PTA events.
How many pages should a student-parent handbook be?
There’s no required number of pages for a student-parent handbook, as well as a mandatory or standard dimension for printed versions. However, regardless of the length and thickness of a handbook, it should have all the necessary information about the school, it’s policy, it’s beliefs, etc.
Do I have to get the approval of the school board to produce and distribute a student-parent handbook?
Yes, you have to get the permission and approval of the school board to produce and distribute the student-parent handbook. Also, keep in mind that you should get the thoughts, opinions, and the suggestions of the other members of the administration.
Student-parent handbooks are both educational and instructional materials, but these should be made with utmost clarity about the school’s preferences and requirements that students and parents should fulfill. So, make the use of your time by using our free student-parent handbook sample forms and templates above now!
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