Managing virtual parent teacher conferences
You can organize virtual parent teacher conferences using a combination of Google Forms, Google Calendar, and Google Meet.
This system will allow parents to select from your available time slots, prevent duplicate meetings, and organize everything on your Calendar.
Here’s how it works:
- Parent selects their preferred time slot using a Google Form
- You confirm the time and set up a calendar appointment containing Google Meet link.
- You invite the parent to the calendar event which sends them all of the information via email.
- You connect using Google Meet with easy access to all of the documents and information you need to share with the parent.
Does this sound like a system that could work for you?
Let me help you get started!
Step 1: Build your Form
To begin, you need a Google Form that collects the information you need in order to schedule the virtual conference. I recommend that you start with my template and customize it as needed.
You are welcome to modify this template with additional questions.
In order for this system to work you MUST collect the parents email address and their preferred conference time.
To avoid duplicate appointments and make your life easier, I recommend that you install and configure two add-ons for Google Forms.
Install these add-ons for your form:
- Choice Eliminator Lite – this add on will automatically remove a conference time once it has been selected. This eliminates the possibility for duplicate appointments.
- Form Postman – this add-on will notify you when a parent fills out your form.
These add-ons will automate some of the more annoying parts of the registration process.
Don’t worry, these add-ons are very simple to use. I’ll walk you through the entire setup process.
Note: many districts block add-ons. You may need to contact your IT admin to get these add-ons approved. You can also set up your form using a personal Gmail account which will bypass district restrictions.
Watch this video if you would like step-by-step instructions on how to configure these add-ons.
Share the form!
Once you are happy with your form, share it with the parents in your class.
You can email it to them, send it via text using Remind, or post it to your class webpage.
Step 2: Configure your calendar
You need to transfer the information parents submitted through your form into your calendar. The easiest way to do this is by setting up appointment slots.
- Create a new event on your school calendar (this will NOT work with a personal Gmail account)
- Look for the appointment slot option
- Configure your appointment slots to match the conference times on your Google Form
- Use the “details” box to include important information parents need to know (see example below)
- Save the appointment slots
You can complete this step at any time.
Now you need to wait for parents to fill out your form.
Your virtual conference is confirmed!
I look forward to meeting with you to talk about your student’s academic progress this year.
Follow these steps to join the virtual meeting room:
- Click the Google Meet link listed above
- You will be placed in the waiting room until I join the session and open the room.
- Earbuds are recommended to reduce background noise and echo
You can join the virtual meeting using any computer or mobile device. If you join using a mobile phone you will be prompted to install the free Google Meet app.
If you need to reschedule or have issues joining, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Step 3: Reserve selected time
When a parent fills out your Google Form, you will receive an email notification with their information.
You need to transfer that information to Google Calendar.
Visit the appointment page for your time slots and select the time chosen by the parent.
Enter the parent’s name in the “what” field of the appointment slot.
Note: parent’s won’t be notified quite yet…
Step 4: Send Invitation
Now that you have reserved the appointment time, a new event will appear on your calendar. We are going to make a couple of modifications and send an invitation to the parent.
- Open the calendar event and click “add Google Meet video conferencing”
- Enter the parent’s email address in the “guest” field.
- Optional: Add any additional notes or information in the description field. You can also attach student work samples, progress reports, or any other documents you would like to discuss during the virtual meeting.
- Click Save. This will send an email notification to the parent with the event information.
Drop me a comment if you have questions or issues setting up your conference registration system.
I would also love to know what modifications or improvements you made to this system!