It’s report card time. With the COVID Slide, distance learning, and the stress of navigating a new school environment, children may be bringing home lower than ideal grades on their first report card of the school year. Brian Telford, owner of Huntington Learning Center in Brentwood, offers parents these tips to deal with a report card with one or more low grades:


Talk with your child. Before scheduling a conference with the teacher or doing anything else, have a conversation (or several) with your child. Avoid getting angry and instead let your child do most of the talking. Ask your child what has been challenging in the past few months and whether it’s possible that a lack of effort is partially to blame or if there’s something else going on.


Talk with the teacher. Whether you’ve talked with the teacher a few times this semester already or your child’s poor performance comes as a surprise, it’s important to set a time to talk with your child’s teacher about how to support your child at home, what your teacher sees during class and his or her greatest concerns. You might schedule two conversations with the teacher: one without your child and one with the three of you.


Address the weak academic areas first. The highest priority should be addressing those skill gaps or problem areas that are causing your child to underperform or struggle. It could be that the COVID-19 slide caused your child to fall behind and he or she is having a hard time catching back up. Work with the teacher(s) to get an understanding of what your child might be missing and how to start filling in the gaps.


Address the other issues at play too. School difficulties can be caused by many things. If your child always seems to put time and effort into homework but is getting low grades, there might be a learning issue at the root of the problem. If your child has focus issues, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder could be the culprit. Or if your child seems withdrawn or apathetic about school, it might be worthwhile to explore the possibility of any mental health problems. Remote or hybrid learning is challenging for some students and getting organized might be a way to get your child back on track.


Create a plan. Understandably, these conversations can be difficult and stressful. But don’t forget the most important step to take: creating a plan of action. That might involve your child going to the teacher’s in-person or remote office hours and the two of you sitting down to create a good homework routine. Maybe you schedule an appointment with a specialist to see if there are any underlying learning issues. Or maybe you have your child assessed by Huntington to determine the best course of action.


Whatever is contributing to your child’s low grades and lackluster school performance, Huntington can help. If the report card this semester clearly shows that your child is struggling, call 615-376-8000 to hear more about our one-to-one tutoring programs that will pinpoint your child’s areas of weakness and help them improve academic performance and boost their confidence. Your child deserves to feel successful in school.


About Huntington Learning Center of Brentwood

Huntington Learning Center of Brentwood has helped students from Williamson County and south Davidson County since January 2008. Their certified teachers work with students K-12 providing individualized instruction in phonics, reading, writing, homework help and study skills, elementary and middle school math, Algebra through Calculus, Chemistry and other sciences. They offer standardized test prep sessions for a variety of exams including AP, ACT and SAT. Huntington programs develop the skills, confidence, and motivation to help students succeed and meet the needs of Common Core State Standards. Brentwood Huntington Learning Center is accredited by the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools. Founded in 1977, Huntington’s mission is to give every student the best education possible. To learn more, call 615-376-8000 or visit  The center is located at 95 Seaboard Lane in Brentwood.