Based on the replies so far, this will likely be an unpopular opinion.
I think the teacher is using the tools at her disposal to make her life easier, manage her classroom better, communicate privately with the parents and overall make things as simple as possible. I think you are asking to make her life more difficult.
I will say that I do not have any issues of paranoia or concerns over the internet safety issue. I know there any many people who have concerns and some of them are valid. But, for me, the internet is here to stay and it's how I live a lot of my life. I bank on it, pay bills on it, email on it, etc. I password protect and am careful with sites as much as possible. But, for me, I'm just not going to worry about the possibilities of such things. This is just said to lay out my general state of mind over the issue.
So, that said...the site is password protected - make it as complicated as you wish. And, frankly, if someone somehow hacks in - they will know...how your kid behaved? If you don't need to see how they behave everyday - don't check. If that's all the website does - never check. If there is a real issue, you will get a phone call or note.
The truth is that electronic communication is often easier, more reliable and certainly more eco-friendly. Teachers already have to pay for their supplies including paper - and who knows, now days, maybe even printing. Sending an email is really easier for the teacher. Not to mention, an email is "a note" - an electronic note that can convey any sentiment that the teacher could write on a piece of paper. Also, papers get lost - who knows what gets home. Once a email is confirmed as correct, the likelihood of the message getting through is extremely high. It also allows a parent to go back and review any messages at their leisure without maintaining a stack of paper. All in all, it's just better.
Now, there are certainly people who still don't use the internet. There was one parent in my daughters' K class last year who did not have internet. Certainly, she received paper notices. Some people have email addresses and just never, ever check them. And that's ok. I would suspect however, that most of those people are not especially computer literate people (and they probably aren't spending time on etiquette forums either
:-)) In these situations, I do think it makes sense that paper correspondence is sent.
And, then there are the people who really are incredibly concerned with internet safety. Again, I would suspect these people are probably very
careful with their internet use.
Now :-) after all that, OP you don't sound like any of those people. So, to me, unless you have a physical (lack of computer or internet) or philosophical (the internet is a way for big brother to track my every move), then if you do demand personal correspondence from the teacher instead of the teacher's preferred method of communication - then unfortunately, you are
being that parent.
I love email. I love school websites. In fact, I met with some parents this morning and we are going to set up a Shutterfly site for our 1st grade class so parents can email each other, ask questions, coordinate class parties, post announcements, and post pictures (with permission).
My experience has been that despite email, web sites, etc. that if an issue really does arise with your child, the teacher will
contact you by phone or note and then meet with you in person to discuss the issue if necessary. Email is not a substitute for dealing with issues that do
need to be dealt with in person, but it is a way to manage all the things that do NOT need to be handled in person.
So - my verdict is
- unless you really object to the internet as a means of communication on safety grounds, then do your teacher a favor and just work with her in the way that works best for her. She has enough going on. And, that doesn't mean you can't send her notes whenever you want to. I send notes to my girls' teacher all the time - especially last year in kindy. But, it may be easier for your child's teacher to deal with it after class in the evening and respond by email instead of finding time in the middle of the teaching day.
Teachers have so much going on...I think you should give your teachers a break:-)
Modified to add: PS - OP - if you really do have concerns then I do think you have the right to ask to have your child's information exempt from the site. I just think that if your main objection is just that you prefer phones and paper over email, then you should let it go and go with the flow.