The PTA’s Family-to-Family program, new to TPMS this year, is a voluntary program for new families who would like the support of a more experienced host family, to ease the transition to middle school. Family-to-Family gives students a new friend at school and gives parents a familiar face to look for at PTA meetings. Host families provide helpful tips, a friendly voice of experience and a more personalized welcome to TPMS.
Host family support can take different forms, depending on the individual situation. It can be as simple as making a single phone call, but it may also result in a new best friend. The program will become what each pair of families makes of it.
To promote comfortable dialog, we attempt to first match families according to their spoken language preference. If another special circumstance is indicated (special needs, magnet, single-parent, other), those factors are also kept in mind, to make the exchange of experience and advice as practical as possible for new families. Above all, we want families to feel welcome at TPMS, and a friendly first encounter is most important.
Each match will be considered successful if there has been one appropriate and completed contact, initiated by the host family. This can be as simple as a phone call or email in which contact is made, the new family is given an opportunity to ask questions, and the host family replies. On the other hand, the phone call or email might also contain an invitation to meet for coffee, or even dinner at the host family’s house. The host family may encourage the new family to come to an event at school, and through such introductions join a wider circle of friends.