Parent Organization - FAN
The purpose of the Family Action Network is to Engage Families and Build Community by:
- Promoting a positive school culture and creating a sense of inclusiveness/belonging for all parents and children
- Sponsoring social events that bring our community together
- Supporting/creating fundraising opportunities to fund classroom budgets and enrichment opportunities
- Being advocates for our children, our school and our community
- Harnessing the power of volunteers to support teachers and staff
Interested in Becoming a FAN Room Parent?
Room Parent Roles and Responsibilities
Room parents play a vital role of helping us reach families in a more personalized way.
Here are some Key Room Parent Responsibilities:
- Attend Family Action Network (FAN) Meetings. At least one Room Parent per classroom should attend or please ask another parent to attend.
- Stay informed. Attend FAN meetings, read the Thrive website, the Thrive Newsletter and weekly site update and FAN Newsletter.
- Keep other parents informed of upcoming events through email and word of mouth. The FAN Secretary or a room parent coordinator will send you regular emails with information to pass on to the parents in your class. Please use ParentSquare to email parents. (ParentSquare can only be used for school purposes; no personal content please.)
- Help parents in your room get connected to ParentSquare. School staff will be sharing with you a list of folks who may not be connected yet. Please reach out to those folks who have not logged in or connected and see if you can help them. If technology or language is a barrier, please find alternative modes to keep them engaged (a buddy, a paper copy of news in their kids backpack, another parents who can translate, etc)
- Be an ambassador for Thrive. Room Parents do a crucial job in fostering and creating community within the school by chatting with parents at pick up/drop off, organizing get togethers, and inviting parents to events.
- Meet with your teachers as needed to provide support for class activities and social events. Help is especially needed for Fall Social and Exhibition.
- Assist teachers with Exhibition (Dates TBD) . This includes helping kids with art projects, finale set-up and tear-down, and possibly organizing your classroom’s food for the event if needed.
- Celebrate your teachers’ birthdays. Keep it low-key! A teacher’s favorite snack or lunch; a single flower to make a bouquet; a personal card made by the kids. For summer month birthdays, feel free to celebrate half-birthdays. Check with the Main Office to find your teachers’ birthdays or use the “Get to Know Your Teacher” form (pg 5 of this document). Elective teachers’ birthdays are celebrated separately and are not a room parent responsibility.
Cheat Sheet: Room Parent Responsibilities By Month
- Collaborate with other on the team: If your class has multiple room parents, meet with them to decide who will be in charge events (e.g. attending FAN meetings, sending class emails, organizing sign up sheets for Fall Social). This is the key to room parent bliss!
- Staff the FAN welcome table during the 1st month of school so families learn about ways to get involved and opportunities.
- Meet with your teacher as soon as you can to discuss how they need your help. Your teachers will let you know what kind of support they need from you throughout the year. You can also go over the “Getting to Know Your Teacher Form” at that time. Some teachers may not want this information shared with everyone, and others will be delighted. This form can be shared with other parents for gift giving ideas for birthdays, holidays and teacher appreciation week.
- Inquire if they need help maintaining a classroom wish list for class supplies. Also, ask them if they need help planning field trips for the upcoming year (many field trips book months, even a year in advance). Remember, teachers first priority is the students, so be flexible and lean with their time!
- ***Ask teachers for times and dates of holiday celebrations, field trips, etc. so you can notify parents in advance who would like to participate and need time to make arrangements to be there. Parent participation is increased if they have more time to plan ahead. Listen to what teachers have in mind for celebrations. Each teacher has different styles. Some like a big party, and others are more about a quiet celebration. And remember, we have a diverse community of learners who celebrate differently. Always be thoughtful when planning.
- Kindergarten room parents: If you are inspired to do so, organize a meet-and-greet social with the parents in your class. These should be casual coffee get-togethers held after drop off on campus. Please organize a social that includes all classrooms for a grade level so parents have a chance to meet all families.
- Connect with new families to welcome them to our community and invite them to join you at FAN meetings, Parent Ed gatherings, Pizza Social, etc.
- When hosting social events, please use “event kit” to make sure folks are welcomed and connected.
- Attend and encourage others to attend the Parent Fall Social. Check with the parent volunteer coordinator for more details about planned events.
- Assist the teacher in planning an age-appropriate Fall Festival/Halloween celebration. Please be respectful of cultural differences.
- Consider a small celebration of gratitude this month. It could be as simple as writing a thank you letter to someone, doing a small craft or an easy age-appropriate simple cooking activity.
- Attend and encourage others to attend the FAN Holiday Potluck Brunch (12/2, 8:45AM) to be held at the school.
- Talk to your teacher about plans for a winter holiday celebration. Thrive is a non-denominational school and does not celebrate specific religious holidays, including Christmas. If a celebration is planned, please keep it low-key and respectful of cultural differences. Suggestions: organize a potluck breakfast, bring in a “welcome winter” craft or invite parents in to the class to share holiday traditions, or read holiday books. (Check with your teachers.)
- Meet with teachers to discuss classroom activities and needs for the second half of the year, particularly regarding Exhibitions and classroom events, such as field trips and Community Service Day.
- Assist teacher, as needed, with Exhibitions projects.
- Inform parents about Read Across America/Pajama Day (March 1)
- Ask teachers if they need any assistance planning a Valentine’s Day celebration. Teachers may allow valentines to be handed out. This is a great day to celebrate the students’ friendships and the community at Thrive.
March & April
- Assist teacher, as needed, with set up and attend Exhibition (Dates TBD , 6:00-8:00PM)
- Earth Day is April 22nd. Ask your teacher if they would like help planning activities to celebrate this day.
- Teacher Appreciation Week (Dates are Early May): Room parents should remind parents about teacher appreciation days, and inform them that each family may recognize their teacher in their own special way. “Getting to Know Your Teacher” forms will be available for parents who are interested in giving gifts to their children's’ teachers (if available).
- End-of-the-Year Party: Meet with your teacher(s) to organize and plan an end of the year party. These may be held on campus during the last week of school or at an off-site location (ie. park, beach).
- Use your best judgment with the frequency of emails using the class listserv. There is rarely cause to email parents more than once a week. Use this method of communication sparingly.
- Organize periodic get-togethers with your classroom/grade level parents and/or children.
- Delegate! Encourage others to help you and to get involved. Be direct and specific when you are asking for help. It is usually most effective to approach or email someone directly, as in “Would you please…” You should never feel obligated to do everything yourself or single-handedly pay for costly items/events.
- Be positive. Be helpful. Have fun!
Please let us know if you have any questions or if you need any help.