Student-Led Three Way Conference

Student-Led Three-Way Conference

A Parents' Guide to Student-Led Three-Way Conferencing (SL3WC)


What is Student-Led Three-Way Conferencing (SL3WC)?

A SL3WC is a conference with parents led by the student. Students lead parents through a discussion of their work and established academic and social goals. The role of the classroom teacher is a facilitator in the conference process. The student directs the conversation focused on their work and classroom behaviour.
It is also a time to:

  • Celebrate your child’s progress in school
  • Give your child the opportunity to talk about their strengths, areas for improvement, and goals in different subject areas and learning skills
  • Provide immediate feedback on your child’s learning portfolio
  • Identify gaps in understanding and/or learning
  • Provide positive feedback for student success
  • Share improvements in the areas of academic and personal growth
  • Model active listening skills
  • Cater to and support the range of abilities of your child

What is the purpose of SL3WC?

The process of communicating the student progress to parents should involve the most important person in the learning process, the student. For a discussion of student work to be relevant, accurate and complete, students need to be meaningfully engaged in the process. Having students lead a conference with parents is a way to maximise their involvement. The involvement of the students in the conferencing process promotes three elements essential to improving student performance in school:

  • Relevance: why we are teaching what we are teaching to students
  • Responsibility: making the student more responsible for learning
  • Reporting: how he/she is progressing in learning

Do I need to attend?

Yes! Your attendance will show your child that what they do in school is important. It also gives your child the opportunity to share their successes and academic goals with you in a meaningful way. If you have any questions about your child’s academic progress, this is the time to ask those questions also.

What is my role as a parent in a SL3WC?

This is an opportunity for you to view learning experiences through the eyes of your child. You are encouraged to listen to your child as he/she presents information and ask questions whenever appropriate. You should also give positive feedback and focus on what your child can do and has already successfully achieved. This is a time to encourage and celebrate your child.

What is the student’s role in a SL3WC?

Through all stages of the conference process, preparation, implementation and evaluation, the student becomes the key participant. The student becomes responsible for working with the teacher to identify strengths, and for identifying learning needs and collecting evidence to validate learning. Whereas the self-reflection process is missing from traditional conferences, it is an integral part of the SL3WC process.

What is the teacher’s role in a SL3WC?

The teacher’s role is to organise the conference environment and guarantee success. This includes scheduling, guiding portfolio collection, training students and setting up the conference space. The teacher is a guide and facilitator during the conference.

How will my child benefit from this process?

  • The student takes responsibility for reporting their learning to parents.
  • Students must organise their work and prepare to share what they have learned with parents.
  • The SL3WC process increases parent involvement and participation in their child’s educational journey.
  • Students engage in self-reflection of the learning process.
  • Students develop self-evaluation, self-reflection and presentation skills.