Thursday, September 14, 2006

Not Another Day Off!

Sweet Pea has a vacation day from school tomorrow. That nebulous thing called a teacher in-service day. As a child I distinctly remember loving these days because there wasn't anything else scheduled. No trips to visit family. No parties. No parades. No big family meal I had to help prepare (okay I really didn't do much but...) Just me, my friends and an entire day to do whatever we wanted - or nothing at all.

Now, I dread 'em :-) Teacher in-service means I not only have to go to work (because somehow my bosses didn't get the memo) but I have to bring both the girls with me. It isn't fun for any of us.

What I don't understand is where all this time off is coming from! Sweet Pea's been in school for just over a month and already this is her second full day off (she's had a couple half days in there too). I don't ever remember getting this much vacation time from school. Maybe if I had I wouldn't have felt the need to skip - from complete mental exhaustion you understand - when I got into high school. Yeah right.

She has several days off day off next month for fall break (something we never got) not to mention two half days for teacher conferences. A couple holidays in Nov (including Thanksgiving) and then a couple weeks off in Dec. Seriously, how does the school expect me to get anything done if they're constantly letting her out of there!?! :-) I remember school being more like a jail - complete with padlocked gates - than fun. I suppose I shouldn't complain, she loves going to school. Looks forward to it every single morning. Hmm, I wonder if that has anything to do with the fact that she's in kindergarten?



Jennifer Y. said...

I don't remember getting so many days off either.

Carla said...

We never got all those days off, either. Us Yankees call 'em teacher development days. I guess our teachers were under-developed when the dinosaurs roamed the earth. *eg*

Carla : ) *waving madly to M.*

Linda Winstead Jones said...

They pay for all those days off. School starts so early now, it's ridiculous!

In my day . . . oh, wait, that makes me sound ancient, even though I DID walk to school five miles in the snow with my lunch in a bucket . . . wait, rewind. That's too much info. :-) Anyway. we didn't have so many irregularly scheduled days off, either.


Playground Monitor said...

I just remember school lasting FOREVER! You started after Labor Day and then after about a year you got off for Thanksgiving. And after another six months you got off for Christmas. And then after about a decade school was out.

When #1 son started school I remember being shocked by spring break (which was called AEA week back then). We never had a spring break. Now they get a fall one too. My kids got a couple "free" days plus there were the snow days built into the calendar; if they didn't use them for snow they got them off free in the spring. I'm glad my kids are out of this new scheduling mess. Now I know that school has started because the school bus appears in my neighborhood each day.

Hang in there!

Maven Linda Howard said...

Because I went to a very small country school, when I was in grade school I can remember school being out for the two weeks (I think it was two) when the cotton had to be picked. Middle of October. Now, of course, cotton is picked by machine, but back then all the farm kids whose parents grew cotton had to stay out of school and help pick the crop. It was a weird arrangement: if you didn't pick cotton you had to go to school, but nothing much happened; the cotton-picking kids weren't counted as absent, and when they returned the lessons picked up right where they'd left off two weeks before. So we non-cotton kids still had to go to school, the teachers still had to be there, but somehow none of it counted.

Our school usually started about August 20-24, somewhere in through there. We'd be off for Labor Day, then except for the strangeness of cotton-picking time we wouldn't have any days off until the two days of Thanksgiving. Two weeks for Christmas. One week in March for AEA. No snow days. I mean, really. We live in the South. How many snow days do we need???? Then school would be out by the middle of May and we had three full months off for the summer. Now, the kids just get two months off, because the school has been closed for so many freaking days during the year.

Smarty Pants said...

I never had fall break and we certainly didn't get snow days or cotton breaks in Arizona, but we did get two days off in November for Rodeo. November was great because we'd get Veterans Day off, then 2 days for Rodeo, then Thanksgiving. When I moved to Nevada, I lost Rodeo days, but gained Halloween off (Statehood day) and a teacher in service day. I doubt we went a full week the month of November.

But we got out mid May and started back mid August. 3 whole months! Of course, they say now that kids lose too much knowledge over that large of a gap. In NV, they started year round schools where you go 5 weeks, get 1 week off, 1 month for summer, etc. That would be OK, but the schools were overcrowded so they had different tracks to kids were out at different times. Confusing! Glad I graduated before all that craziness.


Rhonda said...

LJ's right. They're starting so early now they have to build those days in. Kids in our area went back on August 4th. Mine didn't go back until the 14th, one of the benefits of private school. I love having those extra days with them.

Sorry, Instigator! I know it makes it hard for you.

Kathy said...

Take no offense but many people will give you the excuse that we have to keep up with the Japanese in order for the next generation to help our economy grow. I actually heard this conversation at my post office when I first moved here years ago. I thought it was funny, actually. But apparently the Japanese go to school year round and that's why they're so smart!

Also, you have to take into account that we now have more families with two working parents. There is a push for year round schools so child care isn't such an issue. Now I'm not saying parents are trying to relinquish control of their kids or that it takes a village to raise a child. I'm simply saying that society has changed.

Long ago, schools didn't have air conditioning. As Maven Linda Howard suggested, schools were closed or kids were allowed to go home to help out on farms. What is our excuse today for keeping our kids in schools longer? Do our reasons matter? Does keeping kids in school longer help to undercut acts of violence and vandalism?

I could go on but the important thing here, Instigator, is that you know you are not alone. LOL. We all grow up and wonder....why?