School asks parents to limit e-mails to 1 paragraph per week

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by ERIC WILKINSON / KING 5 News

KING5.com

Posted on November 23, 2011 at 6:17 PM

Updated Wednesday, Nov 23 at 6:40 PM

Anybody with kids knows school is hard on everybody. A lot of parents simply don't have all the answers whether it's homework or playground drama. And they need help.

That help is usually requested in the form of an e-mail to teachers. But how much communication is too much?

Brookside Elementary in the Shoreline School District sent out a letter to parents this week telling them to limit e-mails to "important issues" keeping them to "one paragraph" and just "one email per week, maximum."  E-mails sent to KING 5 by Brookside parents call the request "ridiculous."

One says the school should limit specific parents who are the problem instead of targetting everyone. Another says limiting e-mails "sends a poor message." As parents picked up their kids for the long Thanksgiving weekend, many agreed.

"I pay taxes. I have a child that goes to school here," says Don Oehlecker. "I have a right to question a teacher or principal as much as I want." Mike Jones said, "There shouldn't be a pre-set limit because you never know what kind of circumstances might come up."

District officials say with up to 30 kids in a classroom, teachers are deluged with email every day, leaving them less time to teach. They're asking parents to be thoughtful about their teacher's time.

"When you're getting multiple e-mails from the same parent or parents it might become a bit much when you're also teaching all day," says District Spokesman Craig Degginger.

Degginger stresses the letter sent out by Brookside's principal is not district policy. School officials now say parents at Brookside and at all Shoreline schools should feel free to e-mail as often as they feel necessary. They do ask that parents keep it brief and to the point.

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