How do you deal with difficult parents?
Answer examples and advice for how to answer this interview question for a Social Studies Teacher interview
The interviewer wants to know that you feel confident in facing difficulties, especially when talking to the parents of your students. Difficult parents can be much more challenging than the students at times! When a student is struggling in your class, you might be faced with parent meetings. Speak from experience. If you haven't been in this situation before, talk about how you would handle it, drawing from your personal experience.
Basic answer example
"I talk to the parents in the same way I approach a struggling student. I want to understand the bigger picture of what's wrong, so I ask questions and I listen. Once we identify the problem, we discuss ways that we can work together to help their child improve their results."
Entry Level answer example
"I understand that some parents may be challenging. I would remind the parent that we are working together towards the same goal, which is guiding their child towards a lifetime of success in learning. I would ask the parent what their expectations are for me, as the teacher, and make a plan from there."
Experienced answer example
"Parents can be emotional when it comes to their children's performance in the classroom. Whenever I have encountered a challenging parent I will first ensure that we have clear-cut, and reasonable goals set, for all parties involved. Often a solid plan of action, written down, and signed by the parents, the student, and myself, is a great help."