A fourth grade teacher in Kansas has gone viral for the extraordinary idea she had that let's parents notify her if their student or family is experiencing difficulties at home. Rachel Harder sent home a "Handle With Care" handout with all of her students that allows parents to text her if their kids are having a hard time.
Ms. Harder said she came up with the idea after attending a trauma conference "There was a discussion how police stations across the country have started partnering with schools so that when they have encounters with families in the evenings or on weekends, the police will contact the school - either counselor or administrator - and let them know to handle a student with care since they had encounters with police beforehand. We loved this idea and figured there had to be a way to make this work within our own classroom community." Now Harder offers parents the opportunity to simply text her with the words "handle with care" if it's been a rough evening or morning. She says "I don't need to know details but parents like that – they know I'm keeping an extra eye on them. I also usually text back and let them know how the morning is going."
If you are an educator, you can print one out here.