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School Dismissal is a stress filled time of day for all involved – Parents, Teachers, and School Administration. That’s why today, we’re going to go over the best dismissal practices for all involved in the process.

school dismissal practices for parents walking to school

School Dismissal Practices For Parents

Parent adaptation is critical for any school dismissal process to work correctly. That’s why we’re addressing the parent side of school dismissal practices first.

We’re all in this together, working to make school dismissal smoother, safer, and swifter. 

Overview of Parent Dismissal Best Practices:

  • Understand Your School’s Dismissal Practices
  • Practice with your Kids
  • Ask Questions Before You Get in the Pickup Line
  • Set Up Software Early
  • Understand the Traffic Patterns
  • Use a Carpool
  • Embrace the Changes

Understand Your School’s Dismissal Practices

Take the time to review all information shared with you by your school about the dismissal process. Do your best to understand what the process entails and your role in that process. 

Practice with Your Kids

This process will heavily involve your kids for the rest of the school year; they need to understand their school’s expectations. Take the time to answer any questions they have. And possibly even do a dry run of the process before school starts. 

Ask Questions Before You Get in the Pickup Line

One of the biggest goals of school dismissal is to make the process as efficient as possible. I’m sure you’ll have lots of questions about the process, but unless they’re crucial to you picking up your child today, save them for a time when you’re not in the pickup line. Send an email to the school staff when you get home or call them first thing in the morning. 

School dismissal is a stress-filled time for all involved, especially for the school staff; asking irrelevant questions will only complicate and lengthen the process. 

Related: 10 Things to Do While Waiting in the School Dismissal Line

driving to school

Set Up Software, Early

School dismissal software has been evolving in the EdTech market in recent years, making dismissal safer, smoother, and swifter. If your school uses software for the dismissal process that requires parent access, take the time to download it, log in, and play around with it before you get in the carline. 

Understand the Traffic Patterns

Some schools are in calm, residential areas where non-school traffic isn’t a huge problem. But some schools aren’t. Take the time to understand the traffic patterns and where your children’s dismissal route will interact with that traffic. 

Go over traffic safety with your kids and help them understand how you expect them to behave during dismissal time and around other cars and traffic. 

Use a Carpool

Carpools between families are an excellent way to minimize traffic and dismissal problems. 

Apps simplify the whole carpool process. From finding members to managing your carpool to tracking how the drive is going. 

Embrace the Changes

Schools and software take time to adapt to new situations. It’s simple to point out the flaws in a system before fully understanding how the system works. 

As your school’s dismissal software adapts to its situation and problems, give everyone ample time to adapt to the changes before you point the flaws. 

There will be many flaws at first.

a teacher managing school dismissal in the classroom

School Dismissal Practices For Teachers

Teachers are an integral part of the daily dismissal practices at schools around the world. They keep kids entertained, organized, and on track of what’s going on. Without them, the whole system would fall apart. Thank you teachers for all you do. Here are a few tips to help make the dismissal process better!

Overview of Best Practices for Teachers

  • Embrace the Chaos and Fun
  • Learn Processes and Software
  • Endeavor to Consistently Improve Dismissal
  • Stay Updated on the Dismissal Process at Your School
  • Share Improvement Ideas After Implementation

Embrace the Chaos and Fun

Changes take time to implement. Encourage yourself, coworkers, students, and parents to go with the flow and accept the changes and new processes as they come. 

Learn Processes and Software 

New software and processes can take a lot of time to understand. You need to know how it works, why it works, and your role in all of it; before you can be effective.

Endeavor to Consistently Improve Dismissal 

School dismissal is a continually evolving process. The past decade has seen a rise in the usage of 21st-century technology during it. 

Since you are on the frontlines of dismissal, you are in a unique place to be aware of its pain points. When you see things that can be improved, don’t keep silent. Speak up and share your opinions with those around you. 

a family leaving school with masks on

Stay Updated On the Dismissal Process at Your School 

Be mindful of periodic changes to your school’s dismissal practices. As we’ve established, school dismissal is an evolving field, and you deal with those changes daily.  

Each software and process update typically includes new training materials. Striving to stay current on them helps you excel at dismissal. 

Share Improvement Ideas After Implementation 

As someone who is probably daily involved in your school’s dismissal, you’re acutely aware of changes and how they impact the process. Because you have that unique perspective, you are in an excellent place to suggest improvements and voice your concerns and opinions.

Keep in mind, though, that changes need adequate time after implementation for proper assessment. After that period, you can all productively voice concerns and pain points to administration. 

Fundamental School Dismissal Practices For School Administration 

School Administration members are typically the first on the scene for adapting new dismissal practices, software, or procedures. That’s why it is critical that you understand what is best.

Related: Top 6 Skills Everyone in School Administration Needs

school administrator

Overview of Best Practices for School Administration

  • Use Software
  • Understand School Dismissal Software from all Perspectives (If you’re using Software)
  • Use Guides for All staff Members
  • Practice Your Processes
  • Evaluate and Adjust Regularly
  • Designate the Different Areas Used in Pickup
  • Consider Staggered Dismissal
  • Encourage Carpooling
  • Store School Dismissal Practices on Your Website

Use Software 

Dozens of school dismissal software solutions have been developed in the past decade. PikMyKid is one such platform. 

School dismissal software expedites the process, increases safety, simplifies procedures, and adds accountability to the entire system. 

Understand School Dismissal Software from all Perspectives (if You’re using it)

School dismissal has been described as an intricate dance; there are dozens of people involved. Everyone must complete each step on time, or the whole thing falls apart and gets offbeat. Software can further complicate the process. 

If you’re using software to improve dismissal, take the time to understand all sides of it. Specifically what it will look like for each group of people using it. School software often appears different to the administration, teachers, and parents because they have different roles.

Do your best to understand each side’s differences and nuances. 

You will be dealing with the management side, the teacher side, and the parent side. Be prepared to answer questions from all sides.

Use Guides for All Staff Members 

Since these processes are so complex and the software can complicate things before making them simple, distribute guides to everyone using the software. If you’re not initially provided with them from your software provider, be sure to ask if they have some. There’s nothing worse than taking the time to create something that already exists. 

Practice Your Processes

Just as a dance takes practice to complete the steps at the right time, your dismissal processes will take a bit of use before they reach perfection. 

Evaluate and Adjust Regularly

Keep in touch with all your staff about improvements they think would benefit the processes.

Related: Social Distancing and School Dismissal in a Post Pandemic World

Designate the Different Areas Used in Pickup

Many schools create color-coded maps of their campus and display them in various places both online and distributed. They guide parents, students, and staff through the different areas of your campus used throughout the dismissal process. 

Consider Staggered Dismissal

Staggering the dismissal times for different classes and staggering where students are dismissed will speed up the process because there will be fewer students to keep track of at a given time. 

Encourage Carpooling

When parents carpool, there are fewer cars in the dismissal line, the process gets faster, and there are less harmful emissions put out into the air. A win-win situation for everyone if you ask me. 

person working on a laptop to put school dismissal practices on a website

Store School Dismissal Practices on Your Website

Create a space on your website where you display updated dismissal process information. Include any software you use, any staggered times or areas, and such. That way, when new parents or staff have questions, you can direct them all to one concise place. 

Along those lines, make sure you notify all parents and staff of all relevant updates to dismissal. Things only work as well as the people operating them understand them.

In Conclusion

School Dismissal Practices are essential, effective, and efficient. Without them, the end of the school day would be a disaster. That’s why it’s crucial to keep up to date on changes in the industry no matter what your role is in dismissal.

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