Traveling with Students-Advice for Advisers
State Conference time is an exciting time for MN FCCLA members and advisers. The opportunity to come to a comprehensive leadership conference, share what you have learned with STAR Events, hear dynamic speakers and learn from other chapters is awesome! Advisers and chaperones have an important role to the safety, impact and the accountability of the members to make the most of the experience.
Travelling to a state or national conference takes some forethought by the advisor.
Tips for an awesome conference experience.
1.Provide training for your chaperones. Review the expectations, schedule and specific needs of students with all of the chaperones.
2.Know the advisor role. Many times advisers have extra responsibilities at state conference. Make sure this is clearly communicated to your chaperones. Schedule a nightly meeting of your chapter group. Determine a schedule for your members. Make them accountable for attending sessions and report back – both formally and informally.
3.Build a buddy system. Most likely, the students who are coming have earned the opportunity to be at the state conference and are great delegates. Give them a buddy system and clear expectations. Be consistent with discipline and follow-up.
4.Communication system. Give one chaperone the role of “lead” and provide a phone list. Student paperwork and code of conduct forms, permission forms to them. Make sure every student has a cell phone number to call you. Enter the student’s and chaperone’s cell phones into your phone.
5.Present a united front. Make sure chaperones have clear expectations of the disciples and tactics to use. Talk in private about any decisions that are unclear. Do not be afraid to call in the advice of your principal if needed. Bring this administrator into the conversation early and keep them abreast of situations needing attention. Sending a student home early may be a difficult call, but may be the best thing for future trips.
6.Develop a “report back” system. What do you expect of your members? Do you expect attendance at sessions? Do you expect they take their roles seriously? Do you expect participation? Do you expect a written or oral report be given after the event? Do you expect that they attend competitions and learn as much as possible for the chapter? Be clear that this is a learning experience and you will be pleasantly surprised about their ability to network, to learn and to share information with the chapter, the school board and with your