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Parents get a chance to learn more about teachers, curriculum
back to school pic1
Wayne Rogers, Kathleen McGinnis (back) and Allison Rogers sit at their childrens desks in Mrs. Wheelers second grade classroom at Julien Elementary School at Back to School Night on Thursday. - photo by ANDREA GOODWIN / The Journal

Back to School Night was a trip down memory lane for many Turlock parents. They sat in child-sized chairs at child-sized desks surrounded by picture books and finger paintings. They sat quietly while teachers explained the year’s curriculum, and some even had snack time. 

“Back to School Night is a time for teachers to connect with parents,” said Janet Wheeler, a second grade teacher at Julien Elementary School.

And what better way to connect than to put parents in their students’ shoes? Elementary school parents across Turlock attended Back to School Nights over the past week. Teachers took the opportunity to meet their students’ parents and tell them more about the class. Kindergarten teacher Stacie Boesch shares a class of 42 students with her co-teacher Mindi Barnes. The teachers have 21 students in the morning and another 21 in the afternoon.

“Kindergarten is a little different than the other grades. Typically, parents don’t just drop their kindergarteners off on the first day of school. They come in with them. Some parents do that for the whole first year,” Boesch said.

Upper grade students are usually not accompanied by a parent on the first day of school, so Back to School Night is the first time most parents and teachers meet.  Wheeler said sometimes only one parent picks the kids up and drops them off, so Back to School Night is a chance to meet the other parent. Even parents who have met their children’s teachers use Back to School Night to get a better understanding of the curriculum for the year.

“I have to know what the expectations are for my child,” said Adrianna Rodrigues, a parent of a second grade student at Julien.

Parents left Back to School Nights with informative hand-outs, class syllabi, and a better understanding of how their child will spend the next school year.

To contact Andrea Goodwin, email or call 634-9141 ext. 2003.