I probably look over the 64 page article the parent handed to me with a look like “You don’t seriously think I am going to read this do you?”
As the principal I know the school’s curriculum and what teachers are doing in their classes. So if the school as a media literacy course I know about it. I first ask the parent to explain to me how the school is contributing to the media’s “mind-rotting of the kids.” I am only concerned about what goes on in my school, not in the homes of every student. This parent is obviuosly very concerned about something or they would not have read the article or made an apointment to see me. I will try to find out what is going on with their child and if there is some way I or anyone else at the school can help. This parent could also be one of those people with little to do so they go around stickinig their nose in where it doesn’t belong and starts trouble to get attention. I need to find out which it is.
I next ask if they read it. If so, I ask them to summarize it for me.
Before the meeting concludes I ask the parent to explain to me what they think the school is doing right, and what it should be doing differently. I also offer to set up meetings with the parent’s child’s teachers. Maybe the parent is not exactly clear on what happens in their kid’s classes.
At the most I will talk to the curriculum director and the teachers involved with the media literacy programs to gain more insight into what is anything the school does along these lines. I may give these people the copy of the article, ask them if they have read it. If yes, then have them summarize it for me. If no, then, if they have the time, read or skim through it and report back if it requires my further attention.
I am not going to read it, require that all teachers read it, or talk about it at the next in-service day. Like I said earlier, my school already has a media literacy or media studies class or program, which I am quite familiar and satisfied with.