Room Parent Guidelines
2021 – 2022 Room Parent Program
The Parent Association (PA) Executive Committee and Room Parent Coordinators strive to give as many parents as possible an opportunity to be Room Parents during their time at Catherine Cook.
Number of Room Parents
- Early Childhood classrooms will have up to three (3) Room Parents
- Lower School classrooms will have at least two (2) Room Parents
- Middle School will have at least two (2) Room Parents per grade
All parents interested in volunteering to be a Room Parent should sign up on the Room Parent Volunteer Form by Friday, July 16, 2020.
After potential volunteers have been identified, the Room Parent Coordinators, along with the support of the PA Executive Committee, will determine the Room Parents based on the following selection criteria:
- Priority will be given to parents who have not been Room Parents in the recent past.
- If a parent is a Room Parent for one child, they will not be selected as the Room Parent for another child (unless no one else is interested).
- If a parent is a Room Parent for one child, they will not be selected as the Room Parent for the same child the following year (unless no one else is interested).
After matching Room Parents with classes, the Room Parent Coordinators will present the proposed list of Room Parents to the PA Executive Committee and then to the Division Heads for approval.
The Room Parent Coordinators will notify all newly selected Room Parents via email with a confirmation receipt request as soon as possible prior to the first day of school. Once the Room Parents have been confirmed, the PA Executive Committee will notify the Early Childhood and Lower School teachers of their Room Parent(s) via email. The PA Executive Committee will also notify Cory Stutts, Jeff Edmonds, and Eddie Pryce about the Middle School Room Parents via email.
Regrets to parents who were not selected as Room Parents will be sent via email before the first day of school.
The newly selected Early Childhood and Lower School Division Room Parents will introduce themselves to their teacher(s) in person or via email as soon as possible at the beginning of the school year. Middle School Room Parents, please introduce yourselves in person or via email to Cory Stutts, Jeff Edmonds, and Eddie Pryce.
Room Parents will receive information from the Room Parent Coordinators prior to the start of school.
A Room Parent Kick-off Meeting will be held virtually on the morning of Thursday, September 9, 2021. All Room Parents are encouraged to attend, as important information will be shared. A Zoom link to join the meeting will be sent in advance.
Room Parent Responsibilities
While some restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic may be lifted, please be aware that the responsibilities outlined below are subject to change should state and/or local guidelines be adjusted. The PA Executive Committee and Room Parent Committee co-chairs will alert Room Parents to any changes as soon as possible.
- Work closely with the Parent Association by:
- Attending monthly Parent Association Meetings. It is mandatory that at least one of the Room Parents per classroom (per grade in Middle School) attend each Parent Association Meeting. Please note that attendance may be virtual.
- Communicating relevant Parent Association information, as communicated by the Room Parent Coordinators, to the Room Parent’s class.
- Following the guidance of the Parent Association and the Head of School with regard to activities and supportive efforts.
- Adhering to budgetary guidelines.
- Supporting Parent Association activities and helping to recruit volunteers.
- Act as an ambassador to the classroom’s parents (grade’s parents in Middle School), introduce themselves via phone calls or email to new and returning parents, and help foster an ongoing sense of community.
- Respect the wishes of the teachers in Early Childhood, Lower School, and Middle School Divisions in regard to classroom policies, procedures, etc.
- Obtain a list of special events from the classroom teacher and recruit volunteers to provide assistance. For Middle School Room Parents, please contact Cory Stutts, Jeff Edmonds, and Eddie Pryce. Note: It is not expected or desired for a Room Parent to be the primary materials provider or volunteer. When materials are requested by the teacher, it is suggested that the Room Parent assign or solicit volunteers to bring them. There are classroom budgets designed to cover costs of requested items. Parents can submit necessary forms for reimbursement.
- When volunteers are needed, the Room Parent should make sure that all parents have an opportunity to participate. Volunteer sign-up websites, such as volunteerspot.com, which uses the “first come, first serve” method, should not be used as they do not give all parents the fair opportunity to volunteer. Room Parents should keep a shared spreadsheet or document to record parents who volunteer to encourage fairness.
- Act as the classroom’s liaison to the school’s Annual Gala Committee.
- Appreciate diverse ethnic or religious backgrounds represented in the classroom by being sensitive to special holidays and traditions.
- Recognize the diversity of our school community by being sensitive to various levels of parents’ time availability and financial means.
- Will NOT solicit for individual class or grade-wide gifts for holidays, baby showers or at other times to show appreciation for the teachers, assistants, advisors, or school.
- Show sensitivity/awareness of special needs of children in the classroom when planning classroom activities or snacks/treats (i.e. food allergies).
- Room Parents in Early Childhood classes may be asked to plan opportunities for parents and students to get better acquainted with one another. Any planned gatherings will need follow guidelines that are provided as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the event that a Room Parent consistently does not attend Parent Association meetings or fulfill their other obligations, the PA Executive committee, in conjunction with the Room Parent Coordinators, may replace the existing Room Parents.