I looked forward to the proposed school calendars with much trepidation. I was right to be wary. Where do they come up with these ideas? I think they really need to take a look around at other school systems. What other county or regional system feels the need to align their schedule with that of a college? Colleges get out in May, certainly. But their courses are more intense, and so they can be completed in nine months.
“Before Labor Day” could, and should, still be in September! They could start on the first, and still end before the end of June. What is this obsession with not going to school in the last half of the month of June? Or at all?
Is there anyone there that looks around and sees how bad this is going to go over with families who are used to making plans in July and August? What happens when it is too hot and the air conditioning is not working? (That happened last year.) And then school is closed and suddenly parents are stuck?
If they used the first proposed schedule (because the second one is just too ridiculous to even contemplate) and started Sept. 1, it would not be such a roadblock in the minds of all the parents. And the last proposed day of school would be June 16, which is still a week earlier than this year. Could they do that, at least? I think most parents would be more accepting of this. (A poll of the handful of parents at our bus stop says this. Another hated item is the half-day teacher conferences. It is a wasted week. Have one day off. We parents are scrambling to schedule every time this comes up!)
Also, I’m glad to see you are finally looking into the idea of “blizzard bags.” But you don’t need the internet to do work from home. The work is sent home ahead of the first storm in a pre-made packet. It is not a six-hour assignment. It is one short assignment from each learning area. First-graders back home did it in less than an hour. For teacher assistance, teachers were available by email during set hours on the snow day. Also, the next week, there were two after-school days that children could elect to stay after for one-on-one help. Part of the problem here is that teachers refuse to work more than eight hours a day, which will not be fixed unless the union will cooperate. Everyone needs to give here. The calendar committee should not be given the “leftovers” after everyone else has had their say. It is unfair to the committee, and ultimately unfair to the students in getting the most out of their learning time.
Am I the only one that has a problem with students going to school in August? There are so many ways to fix this schedule — for the good of the students — not the teachers or administrators or for-profit individuals sticking their fingers in.
But please, please, please ... do not do school in August. That goes against all other experiences of everyone growing up that I have ever known. It would be hard to wrap our minds around it, let alone our lives.
Point of Rocks