Format to Replace Parent-Teacher Conferences


As mentioned in the welcome letters sent by Patricia Appel, Elementary School Principal, and Sibylle Harth, Head of Secondary, to all parents at the beginning of this school year, the traditional full-day Parent-Teacher Conferences (PTC) have been replaced with a new format this year. The new Sprechstunde refers to a specific meeting time you can book with your children`s teachers, or your children`s teachers may request you to come for a meeting during this time.

What is the purpose of dialogue in the Sprechstunde format?

To provide regular opportunities to meet with families and discuss the child’s learning, and actions needed to support growth.

Why is the PTC format being changed to a Sprechstunde format?

  • The existing PTC format creates stressful days for teachers, many of whom have over 40 appointments on a day. The Sprechstunde format seeks to reduce that to a more manageable maximum of four on any single day.
  • The Sprechstunde format provides for more timely feedback, rather than one or two days in a school year. Feedback is more effective when timely.
  • The Sprechstunde format reduces the number of visitors on campus during the pandemic. Scheduling a Zoom instead of an onsite meeting is also possible.
  • The Sprechstunde format provides more flexibility for working parents.

Guidelines for parents regarding the Sprechstunde format:

  • Parents will be able to meet teachers on campus, or via Zoom or telephone. In case of a remote learning situation for one or more classes, the Sprechstunde times remain.
  • Depending on the number of students teachers teach, parents should not make more than one or two appointments unless the teacher requests the meeting. Otherwise appointments made by parents may be canceled.
  • If it is necessary for meetings to be canceled, parents should aim to give at least 24 hours notice.
  • Parents must give at least 24 hours notice when making an appointment.
  • Parents should not schedule appointments more than six weeks in advance.
  • Free slots of teachers will be made available via Parent Portal (found under “Documents and Reports”) from today. The first Sprechstunde appointments have already begun in the week of October 19. It is recommended to make appointments by email and Outlook. On the Parent Portal, you can find the names of your children`s teachers.

The Sprechstunde model will be reviewed during the course of the school year.

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