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Old 08-30-2018, 08:07 AM   #1
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Default Starting School before Labor Day a Failing idea

With a lot of our kids starting school this week, here is a an opinion article that was sent to me this morning, thought it had some merit and it does mention the lakes region and NH, so Here it is

http://www.bostonherald.com/opinion/...a_failing_move


opinions comments? - I for one could not agree more, and I am sure there is more to back it up!
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Old 08-30-2018, 08:17 AM   #2
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With a lot of our kids starting school this week, here is a an opinion article that was sent to me this morning, thought it had some merit and it does mention the lakes region and NH, so Here it is

http://www.bostonherald.com/opinion/...a_failing_move


opinions comments? - I for one could not agree more, and I am sure there is more to back it up!
3 years ago Moultonborough adopted "blizzard bags" as a way of not building in snow days, which allows them to start after the holiday weekend. I think it worked well. My daughter is in college now, so perhaps some parents of school age kids can chime in.

As an aside, my daughter Danielle is off to Spain for the semester, leaving Sunday- her last day at the gas dock at Trexler's will be today.
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Old 08-30-2018, 08:36 AM   #3
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Governor Wentworth District has the blizzard bags too. It saves on the missed days that they need to make up. I think starting after Labor Day is important in an area like ours.
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Old 08-30-2018, 08:49 AM   #4
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I think starting after Labor Day is important in an area like ours.
Why do you believe this?
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Old 08-30-2018, 08:58 AM   #5
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Why do you believe this?


My opinion it’s simple. Kids go back to school the week before Labor Day means less tourism in the area at the close of the season.

Here on Long Island, NY (lol) we have never started before Labor Day with a every few exceptions in certain districts a couple of years ago, which went over like a lead weight.

We have always had 5 to 7 snow days built in the schedule and if they are not used the days are added to Memorial Day weekend if like last year we go over the allotment they lose the Friday before Memorial Day and if necessary an extra day at the end of the year


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Old 08-30-2018, 10:28 AM   #6
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My grandkids in MA started the Wed. before Labor Day in all the heat. STUPID.....no reason except the teachers unions will probably want to bargain about it if they change the calendar. The current situation eliminates a full week of summer vacation time for families......time to change is ling overdue.
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Old 08-30-2018, 10:33 AM   #7
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One more thing...one of my grandkids just started high school...and he is an honors student. Day 1 (Wednesday) was team meetings, games, team building, social, etc. NO EDUCATION. Everyone sweating in the heat...no fans, etc. Day 2 (Thursday) abbreviated class schedule to meet teachers. NO EDUCATION. Day 3 (Friday)...NO SCHOOL. Seriously, this is so stupid. When the hell do students learn ??? This is what we pay big bucks for ???
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Old 08-30-2018, 10:46 AM   #8
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Many high school kids work for area businesses that are in the tourist industry. It is a real strain on local businesses to lose a lot of help before the tourist season ends.
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Old 08-30-2018, 11:09 AM   #9
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One more thing...one of my grandkids just started high school...and he is an honors student. Day 1 (Wednesday) was team meetings, games, team building, social, etc. NO EDUCATION. Everyone sweating in the heat...no fans, etc. Day 2 (Thursday) abbreviated class schedule to meet teachers. NO EDUCATION. Day 3 (Friday)...NO SCHOOL. Seriously, this is so stupid. When the hell do students learn ??? This is what we pay big bucks for ???
It is all about the districts receiving state and federal money. The schools need to be open a certain amount of days to receive their money. The schools also know that the kids will not be in learning mode coming off summer vacation and then having a long weekend so they schedule nonsense. So much easier to start after Labor Day and add the days at the end of the year.
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Old 08-30-2018, 11:22 AM   #10
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i agree Joey, but I do not see the need to add days, i am of the belief that less is more, after these tests they are forced to take, which I am fine with, the lesson plan is over basically. Being from a long line of teachers, which is still going, and not being one myself, I hear this all the time, and I tend to agree.

We all went after labor day and were done middle of June and had snow days that would be built into the school year, why did it need to change,

Snow bags are great, and online is great for snow days, do not understand why other than price that more school departments in the northeast do not subscribe to this

i always find it funny that there is rarely a full week Monday through Friday without a interruption of a half day due to a professional day or something like that, or yet again another scheduled day off, enough with them already
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Old 08-30-2018, 11:41 AM   #11
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In my district, the teachers' contract stipulates the first day of school is the Tuesday after Labor Day. Teachers meet Wednesday and Thursday the week before for professional development, department meetings, etc. We are scheduled to be out June 16th with no snow days.

To me, starting after Labor Day is ideal because we hit the ground running as the holiday weekend provides a closure point.

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Old 08-30-2018, 11:56 AM   #12
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In my district, the teachers' contract stipulates the first day of school is the Tuesday after Labor Day. Teachers meet Wednesday and Thursday the week before for professional development, department meetings, etc. We are scheduled to be out June 16th with no snow days.

To me, starting after Labor Day is ideal because we hit the ground running as the holiday weekend provides a closure point.

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Old 08-30-2018, 12:26 PM   #13
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Why do you believe this?
swnoel, because in this area the businesses use kids to fill the jobs. And I also do't think an few days makes a huge difference in the scheme of things.
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Old 08-30-2018, 12:42 PM   #14
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After having a discussion with a former school board member for one of the towns in the southern part of the state, they explained to me the reason school's start before Labor Day, is to make room for the required Teacher Work Shops during the school year, where they have to close the schools for those days. I do know a town in Southern, NH about 10 maybe, 15 years ago now, had a citizen’s petition to stop the schools in that town from starting before Labor Day. They got the required signatures to get it on the School Ballot and the voters passed it. The school board honored it for one year then went back to having schools start before Labor Day again.
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Old 08-30-2018, 12:56 PM   #15
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A few thoughts from my perspective...

Teacher workshops need to be held during the school year because???? Why cannot these be held in the summer where there doesn't have to be a day off from school for the kids.

The days of snow days should be a thing of the past. There is no reason with technology today, everyone now a days has internet access, a phone, a computer etc... teachers could hold classes online during bad weather. Colleges have been doing this for a long time. In fact it could be argued that a conventional classroom isn't even needed anymore. Granted for the lower grades that may be a little tougher but seriously... let's get out of the stone age!

Why do schools today with their astronomical budgets not have A/C in the classroom? What the hell are they spending the money they get on?
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Old 08-30-2018, 01:32 PM   #16
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Our boys go to a private catholic K-8 school on the seacoast. They start after Labor Day, and seem to get out before all of the other schools around. They still have the same state mandates for number of days in session, plus have the catholic holidays that public schools don't take.
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Old 08-30-2018, 01:35 PM   #17
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Our boys go to a private catholic K-8 school on the seacoast. They start after Labor Day, and seem to get out before all of the other schools around. They still have the same state mandates for number of days in session, plus have the catholic holidays that public schools don't take.
exactly my thoughts
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Old 08-30-2018, 01:54 PM   #18
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Our boys go to a private catholic K-8 school on the seacoast. They start after Labor Day, and seem to get out before all of the other schools around. They still have the same state mandates for number of days in session, plus have the catholic holidays that public schools don't take.
My school starts before Labor Day. To get in the required 180 days, have the week or so off around Christmas, a February and April vacation, take Federal Holidays, and have a plan to make up snow days (Blizzard bags are being explored and probably adopted but I want to be sure the work is meaningful and not busy work just to check off a box), we either start before Labor Day or risk getting out in late June. Last year nearby schools who started after Labor Day went until the last week in June while we were out almost a week sooner. In my experience far more learning takes place in September as opposed to June.

Here in Mass Catholic and independent schools are not required to be in session for 180 days. Instead, they answer to their accrediting bodies. Some choose to follow the public school calendar while others do not.

I also have to add that teachers come back two days before the students so at least here, we are not starting before Labor Day to accommodate them.
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Old 08-30-2018, 02:27 PM   #19
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A few thoughts from my perspective...

Teacher workshops need to be held during the school year because???? Why cannot these be held in the summer where there doesn't have to be a day off from school for the kids.

The days of snow days should be a thing of the past. There is no reason with technology today, everyone now a days has internet access, a phone, a computer etc... teachers could hold classes online during bad weather. Colleges have been doing this for a long time. In fact it could be argued that a conventional classroom isn't even needed anymore. Granted for the lower grades that may be a little tougher but seriously... let's get out of the stone age!

Why do schools today with their astronomical budgets not have A/C in the classroom? What the hell are they spending the money they get on?
Amen, Maxum! As a matter of fact, I think they should go year-round!
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Old 08-30-2018, 02:37 PM   #20
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Amen, Maxum! As a matter of fact, I think they should go year-round!
Why do you think they should go all year-round? We didn't and many of us have done fairly well.
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Old 08-30-2018, 02:40 PM   #21
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They really should do away with either February or April vacation. Don't really need both. April is a crappy month to have a week off so I would do away with that one and use the time saved for the week before Labor Day.
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Old 08-30-2018, 02:42 PM   #22
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I was a Sales Rep for most of my professional life. At the end of the week, my manager asked "What did you sell?" He NEVER asked "how many days did you take off because it snowed?"
Teacher workshops: I pay a plumber or a doctor to do the job. I expect him/her to be trained before they get the job, not OJT on my nickel.

This really has nothing to do with education. Not so long ago, but still in another century, school started after Labor Day. Same with school sports. Then, a coach figured out that if he started practice on August 15, he was 18 days ahead of all the other coaches. If you wanted to be on the team, you had to quit your summer job and show up for practice. It just grew from there. More games, start earlier, then the band had to start practicing earlier. This was paid for by the Booster Clubs, not taxpayers. In my opinion, then those who had no booster club (academics) wanted in. And now, here we are.
Notice, private schools start after Labor Day and end in May or early June. How? They have longer days. How simple is that?
Also notice, if you're a graduating HS senior, the year is much shorter. Teachers need all the grades and papers in, and we need time for "Senior Week".

Pardon my cynicism, but the number of days needs reconsideration.

BTW, I think Gilford schools are air-conditioned. I think I helped pay for it.
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Old 08-30-2018, 02:51 PM   #23
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Notice, private schools start after Labor Day and end in May or early June. How? They have longer days. How simple is that?
Also notice, if you're a graduating HS senior, the year is much shorter. Teachers need all the grades and papers in, and we need time for "Senior Week".
Private schools do not receive federal or state funding so the are not required to have a certain amount of school days.
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Old 08-30-2018, 03:09 PM   #24
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Amen, Maxum! As a matter of fact, I think they should go year-round!
That will never happen. There's too much money involved with summer vacations, not just in this state but across the entire country. Places like Hampton Beach, Weirs Beach would be out of business if they lost the vacationers, it would be like that all across the country for places that make much of their living in those 2 to 3 months. Local economies would suffer tremendously.
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Old 08-30-2018, 03:15 PM   #25
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Why do you think they should go all year-round? We didn't and many of us have done fairly well.
Because the lake has been blissfully quiet all of this week!
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Old 08-30-2018, 03:18 PM   #26
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It’s even crazier when you consider that most teachers spend the last 3 or 4 days putting things away and the kids don’t get much schooling anyway.


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Old 08-30-2018, 03:27 PM   #27
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They really should do away with either February or April vacation. Don't really need both. April is a crappy month to have a week off so I would do away with that one and use the time saved for the week before Labor Day.
I agree. February is the one they should and need to keep, those are big weeks (if you include MA vacation) for those that make their living in the winter. At the very least April should be pending until the end of January. Keep it but if you already have 5 snow days by the end of January or even February, then the vacation goes away.
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Old 08-30-2018, 04:10 PM   #28
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Private schools do not receive federal or state funding so the are not required to have a certain amount of school days.

IN NH anyways the following applies to "non public" schools which does not deviate from the requirements of public schools. Note the requirement is defined by hours of instruction and not by number of days. Accreditation has nothing to do with educational requirements.


HAPTER Ed 400 APPROVAL OF NONPUBLIC SCHOOLS

Statutory Authority: RSA 186:11, XXIX; RSA 21-N:9, II


Ed 401.03 School Year.



(a) Each non-public school shall maintain a school year consisting of the following number of hours of instructional time:



(1) In kindergarten at least 450 hours;



(2) In grades one through 6, at least 945 hours; and



(3) In grades 7 through 12 at least 990 hours.
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Old 08-30-2018, 04:15 PM   #29
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Why do you think they should go all year-round? We didn't and many of us have done fairly well.
It's like sleep. Can't stay awake 100% of the time. Need to refresh the brain cell periodically...

Betcha Seaplane Pilot takes a yearly vacation!
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Old 08-30-2018, 04:20 PM   #30
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It's like sleep. Can't stay awake 100% of the time. Need to refresh the brain cell periodically...

Betcha Seaplane Pilot takes a yearly vacation!
I’ll take that bet, Gary! Last vacation was in 2007, and it was a working vacation. But I’m not complaining!
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Old 08-30-2018, 04:30 PM   #31
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Because the lake has been blissfully quiet all of this week!
That is true...

It'll be quieter next week
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Old 08-30-2018, 05:31 PM   #32
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NH requires a set number of hours, MA requires a set number of days. To be counted as a day in MA, students need to be in school through lunch. My school district schedules two professional development day before Labor Day and a few throughout the year via early releases, so there aren't a ton of "wasted" days.

My district isn't perfect, but they almost always do scheduling right!

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Old 08-30-2018, 06:36 PM   #33
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I have said from day one that schools should have the blizzard bags.... I think Moultonboro did a fantastic thing for starting that. I wish all schools up here would also. When I was young we grew up on those and they worked out great. It can be as simple as a drawing for the younger kids or something simple on the computer for the older ones.

As far as starting after Labor Day heck yes...... It's to hot in the classrooms with no AC and they also have them go three days and then off Friday and Monday. So just go after Labor. It's strange how every public school up here also starts either this week or after Labor Day. Keep all them at same dates. For instance Laconia got out June 15th and goes back after Labor Day! Meredith got out June 22nd and went back Tuesday.

It does hurt our economy up here due to the kids have to go back so they lose out on a paycheck and the business lose out on their employees.
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Old 08-30-2018, 06:40 PM   #34
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Default Do kids need a winter break AND a spring break?

I don't know about your NH town but in our town, students have a winter break (last week of February) and a spring break (last week of April). Where I grew up in CT, we only had one 'week long' break between Christmas and the end of the school year. Seems like we could eliminate one of those two weeks and have them start school later (after labor day) and finish school earlier? Snow days are a variable so bake a few in and go with it.
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Old 08-30-2018, 06:45 PM   #35
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Just saw that somebody already posted this idea
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Old 08-30-2018, 09:08 PM   #36
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I can't get over the irony. Statewide, we're arguing two of the best school systems in the USA, over a few "wasted" days. Obviously, to me, the days are wasted and school administrators should go back to generating quality "product" and get over the hangup on number of days. If my child is sick and misses five days in the winter, s/he doesn't have to make it up in June. Why should we do this arbitrary stuff about snow days? or 185 vs. 180 days?
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Old 08-30-2018, 10:01 PM   #37
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I don't know about your NH town but in our town, students have a winter break (last week of February) and a spring break (last week of April). Where I grew up in CT, we only had one 'week long' break between Christmas and the end of the school year. Seems like we could eliminate one of those two weeks and have them start school later (after labor day) and finish school earlier? Snow days are a variable so bake a few in and go with it.
Can't cancel February vacation as the ski areas would lose business. Can't cancel April because mom and dad need to take the family to Disney after a cold winter.
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Old 08-30-2018, 11:52 PM   #38
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Interesting how all the different states, towns, and private institutions have different policies. Seems like everyone has their own different experiences to share from when they were kids.

Imagine raising children in Maine.
Some kids go back to school in mid August and have about a three week harvest break in September depending on where your student goes to school.
(Article from a year ago)

Traditional potato harvest break continues at some Aroostook County schools
https://fiddleheadfocus.com/2017/08/...ounty-schools/
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Old 08-31-2018, 04:47 AM   #39
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Really is no need to reinvent the wheel. If the kids should all go back after Labor Day, which I agree with, just add a couple of days to the end of the year and if you don’t use all your snow days then just let them out earlier in June.


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Old 08-31-2018, 04:58 AM   #40
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I can't get over the irony. Statewide, we're arguing two of the best school systems in the USA, over a few "wasted" days. Obviously, to me, the days are wasted and school administrators should go back to generating quality "product" and get over the hangup on number of days. If my child is sick and misses five days in the winter, s/he doesn't have to make it up in June. Why should we do this arbitrary stuff about snow days? or 185 vs. 180 days?
I agree. We need to get back to quality. We keep spending more and more money (and they never have enough) and IMHO the education today is not as good as it was in our day. They have too many government rules and regulations for one thing.
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Old 08-31-2018, 05:59 AM   #41
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Can't cancel February vacation as the ski areas would lose business. Can't cancel April because mom and dad need to take the family to Disney after a cold winter.

I think people would survive if they were forced to choose between skiing or Disney in February.
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Old 08-31-2018, 07:10 AM   #42
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I think the problem is educators make it more difficult than it has to be. They would like to make you think education is a science and it takes more time to teach than it did 50 years ago. They are forever developing new ways to teach math, science, English. What happened to simple reading, writing, and “rithmatic”? As far as I know, none of these have changed since I was in school and I went back after Labor Day and was out by June 23rd. (We also didn’t have monthly “teacher development” days - always adjacent to long weekends)


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Old 08-31-2018, 07:30 AM   #43
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Much of the rest of the country have schools starting early to mid August and they always do fine. They get out late May
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Old 08-31-2018, 07:31 AM   #44
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I think the problem is educators make it more difficult than it has to be. They would like to make you think education is a science and it takes more time to teach than it did 50 years ago. They are forever developing new ways to teach math, science, English. What happened to simple reading, writing, and “rithmatic”? As far as I know, none of these have changed since I was in school and I went back after Labor Day and was out by June 23rd. (We also didn’t have monthly “teacher development” days - always adjacent to long weekends)


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You think today's students are the same as those from 50 years ago? 25? 10? That "chalk and talk" is effective for students whose culture involves electronics and technology from birth?

Getting kids to read printed words in 2018 IS a science.

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Old 08-31-2018, 07:55 AM   #45
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I think the problem is educators make it more difficult than it has to be. They would like to make you think education is a science and it takes more time to teach than it did 50 years ago. They are forever developing new ways to teach math, science, English. What happened to simple reading, writing, and “rithmatic”? As far as I know, none of these have changed since I was in school and I went back after Labor Day and was out by June 23rd. (We also didn’t have monthly “teacher development” days - always adjacent to long weekends)


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As long as by educators you mean the politicians, school committees, and the general public, I agree. Those in the classroom, teachers, are not the ones mandating state testing, number of days/hours at school, required number of PDPs to stay licensed (or need for a license at all for that matter), requirements around IEPs, mandated free breakfast and lunches, adoption of different standards and curriculums, integration of new safety plans, etc. I am not saying all these are bad, but as one who has spent a career in education, both public and independent, it fascinates me how many things are mandated and how much time it takes to complete the wide variety of state and federal reports that are required. When I started 25 years ago, a Principal could manage the tasks pretty easily. As more things have been mandated I have seen an increased need for additional staff; around here, schools with shrinking numbers now have assistant principals to keep up. Principals were not the drivers in these decisions.

Teachers have a tough job backed by a very powerful union which ensures that they are well-compensated (I have many issues around this but that is for another time). However, various agencies and constituencies are responsible for a great many aspects of education that those in the classroom have to implement, whether or not they think it in the best interest of their students. As more mandates come down, the union advocates for more benefits for its members.

Regarding returning to school after Labor Day to allow vacations and teenagers to work, there are a great many people, especially parents of younger children, who can't wait for school to start as child care can be a challenge. Schools, right or wrong (and I am sure there are lots of opinions on both sides) are asked to do more today than decades ago.

On a larger scale, it's not just schools. Remember flying 30 years ago? Minimal gate checks, no elaborate electronic ticketing system, no need for ID's, etc. Lots of regulations and societal changes have brought change to the airline industry including increased bureaucracy and need for addition workers - which comes at a cost. Many other industries follow suit.

To address the original post, I start before Labor Day which works well. Having a place on the lake, I still get there for the long weekend - so for me, it's a win-win. I get the LD weekend and start my summer season before the crowds arise as my year ends in early June. Finally, before anyone jumps down my throat as to being an over paid, underworked teacher, I work in a school but am not a teacher and not a part of the MTA - but recognize the teachers in my school are worth what they are paid!
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Old 08-31-2018, 09:18 AM   #46
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Totally agree that all schools should begin after Labor Day. And since 180 school days are mandated, why do the kids need a week off at Christmas, a week off in February, and a week off in April???? Why not a Christmas vacation and a March vacation?


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Old 08-31-2018, 09:59 AM   #47
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I agree absolutely..... We don't need February and April vacation get rid of Apirl... Now if you have a child in Meredith it's gotten worse with vacation. They now have gone from two days off for Thanksgiving to the whole week off now..... So now they have week off for Thanksgiving a week for Christmas a week for February a week for April and all the other days here in there. They say the extra days on Thanksgiving are for Teacher Workshop days!
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Old 08-31-2018, 10:00 AM   #48
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Smile Starting School before Labor Day

Geeeez,

What a great article! Straightforward, logical, and for someone who is employed by a school district, trying to understand "their" reasoning, (which I don't) the start date ahead of Labor Day puts enormous pressure on custodian staff and tradespeople to perform the "Deep Clean" of each school building. This is only after summer school and "enrichment" programs have ceased on August the 17th. So again we spend copious amounts of overtime (tax payers $) to be "school ready" in our case, on the 27th of August. Nuts....bring me back to the 60's!

Michael Graham, I loved him on 96.9 talk radio which for some reason got silenced.

Must have been their subversive slant!
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Old 08-31-2018, 12:44 PM   #49
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Yes, everything that the government takes over gets more and more complicated. They have too many people that sit all day and make rules and regulations for everything!

Does it really matter if the kids went 180 days if they didn't learn anything? Does it really matter if they have big fancy building if they could learn sitting on the lawn?

The GWRSD District has been having more than a week for Christmas vacation too. I don't know about this coming year.
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Old 09-01-2018, 05:24 AM   #50
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Default Sununu supports later start

From the Laconia Sun:

https://www.laconiadailysun.com/news...ticle-nav-next
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Old 09-01-2018, 06:02 AM   #51
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Not a very detailed article. What’s the next step? How will the days be made up? What do school districts think? ect........


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