Monday, September 13, 2010

Late Start Mondays

So our school district implemented a new policy.  Late start Mondays.  The purpose for starting an hour late every Monday is to allow teachers a chance to get together and collaborate.  This is a FANTASTIC idea!  It’s quality improvement at its finest, and I’m honestly geeking out about the process.


I am NOT so fond of the way in which it’s been implemented.  Why why why does the routine of every single family in the county have to be disrupted by an hour per week?  Granted, they do offer childcare … for a fee, and minus the transportation.  Additionally, Kindergarten is in its own building, not with the elementary schools, so families with a child in kindergarten and a child in another grade will either have to make arrangements at work to go in later (and keep the bus), or drive kids to multiple destinations before work (for a fee) to keep some semblance of routine and normalcy.

There was no parent or community voice in this decision.

Why can’t this be done before or after school hours?  Why must every family with a child enrolled (in the state mandated school system) have to cater to a wonky schedule?  There is no other occupation in the world that can do this to thousands of people.  Submit to these hours or suffer the consequences!!!

I understand there are all sorts of demands on teachers.  I really really do.  But this solution to implement a super idea is flat!  My (highly scientific and statistically significant) research (via Facebook) indicates this is happening across the country. Though many teachers are underpaid, the fact remains that … it’s a salaried position.  I worked more than 40 hours, too, when I was employed, and I didn’t get summers off.  Granted, licensure requirements for continuing education, etc, likely get in the way, and add demand to teachers’ time.  Can’t we find a way to allow this collaboration effort to fill a CE requirement?  What better way to learn than from other teachers!  There must be some way to allow this time to the teachers without such an impact on the community. 

Chances are fair that there’s a teacher or two out there unhappy about my post.  (I’d claim there were more, but I’m fairly certain this corner of the web doesn’t get too much traffic).  I don’t mean to be abrasive, but honest and forthright in a real issue with real impact.  Granted, my weekly hour with its logistical complexities isn’t on the level of homeland security or global hunger… but it is one more frustration and one more thing to juggle on top of:

  • My homework
  • Cosmo’s homework
  • Getting Swing to PreK
  • Getting Cosmo to 3rd grade
  • Getting the boys to the sitter before school
  • Remembering Cosmo’s meds in the morning
  • Remembering Cosmo’s meds in the afternoon
  • Making dinner
  • Feeding the pooch
  • Keeping track of the Woodsman’s retail schedule
  • More of my homework
  • Realizing I neglected to read two articles before class (and there’s a QUIZ)
  • Pulling something out for dinner
  • Making sure the boys’ teeth are brushed

All these things I run off in a checklist in an order every morning.  When the routine is interrupted, the entire checklist is interrupted.  I’m pretty sure I’m not the only person alive who operates this way.  I should be able to “run on autopilot”.  Late start Mondays strip me of that.

*steps off of soapbox*

1 comment:

  1. wow. and i thought "early out" day was weird. Late start is just silly.

    I'm totally with you on the salaried position part. No one was [yet] forced to be a teacher, these things come with the job! Chief sure does more than 40 hours at the office and brings some work home. I'm sure he'd like a Late Start Monday so he can get an hour of work done before the demands of the rest of post.... Maybe the CG will accommodate him. :-\