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teachkids









  


Post  Wed, Aug 08 2018, 11:39 am
I do want to point out that often the administrators are still working, often in the school building, on those days off. They don't take those days off despite "making the decision". As a regular teacher, I have walked into school on vacation day to pick something up or drop something off, and the administrators are hard at work, often doing things that can't get done when students are in school.
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debsey









  


Post  Wed, Aug 08 2018, 11:44 am
What I find the most annoying about our schools (and I've had this more with girls' schools than boys) is when they reschedule events like plays, siddur parties, fairs, etc. at a moment's notice.

I don't have a ton of flexibility in my schedule, especially when it's very close to the event. My job entails a lot of working with government agencies. I can't reschedule a court date because "Morah Bashy's Chumash play was supposed to be Wednesday at 12 but her mother in law wants to come see if so it will have to be Thursday at 10."

Set the date, and barring catastrophic events, either don't change it, or call those of us who don't have "heimishe" jobs and ask if the change is going to be a major problem.

No matter what, I'm not missing that Chumash play, but it makes me look really unprofessional to reschedule a meeting with a government agency a week out!
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amother




Burgundy


Post  Wed, Aug 08 2018, 12:01 pm
amother wrote:
This year I am paying $80,000 in tuition for five kids. And I'm entitled? I'm entitled because there are - and I counted - 161 days of school this year? I'm not counting early days of dismissal either.

I work in healthcare. As someone else mentioned, do you even realize how hard it is to get someone else to cover your shifts? Do you know what it means when your non-Jewish boss has to google "Shushan purim" because think you're making it up?

And guess what? I used to be a teacher too. Yes, it's a hard, demanding job. But guess what? You went into it because you don't have to explain to your boss what a "tabernacle" is. And you don't have to worry that you'll be written up for patient abandonment for not being able to work. So pat yourself on the back, and if you think it's so hard, then quit and find a job elsewhere.

Skewed priorities? Are you insinuating that wanting more than 161 school days means that I somehow hate my own children? That I deviously rub my hands thinking of the poor, defenseless teachers that I can railroad into watching my kids?

Public school has more school than we do, and that's a problem.


What location is 161 days a year legal?
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Aylat









  


Post  Wed, Aug 08 2018, 12:30 pm
My4Jewels wrote:
By far the funniest thing I read today was “it’s not that difficult to keep the younger ones occupied"



Especially compared with all the threads about how to keep kids busy / entertain them during the holidays! Laughing
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Hashem_Yaazor









  


Post  Wed, Aug 08 2018, 12:44 pm
amother wrote:
What location is 161 days a year legal?

It varies by location, but many places go by instructional hours, not days. And with longer school days, it's very likely that the hours are met easily with fewer days of being in session.
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amother




Orchid


Post  Wed, Aug 08 2018, 12:47 pm
imorethanamother wrote:
First of all, it's not true that these are "universal holidays". More and more of us work in healthcare.

Second of all, most schools spend at least two days before the break making the kids clean (sigh), and then the school sells the building. So the cleaning part isn't why schools have off almost a week before Pesach actually begins.

I don't know anyone traveling who needs that excessive amount of time before Yom Tov either. Let's face it: it's so everyone can shop and cook at leisure while real working families have to do it every night for a month before Pesach begins.

Also, why does everyone keep assuring everyone there's lots of "vacation camps"? We know! They're really expensive!


The poster to whom I was responding said schools were closed the day before and after Pesach, not for more than a week before. That schedule would be absurd. Moreover, I said that schools cannot be open chol hamoed Pesach because they're impossible to clean completely. Not that they cannot be open for a week before. Bigger sigh.

I hasten to add that none of my kids have ever had to clean their classrooms before Pesach.

As to vacation camps, I was again responding to someone who was lamenting that as a working parent, her only option was to send her kids to overcrowded and unsafe vacation camps run by teens. Its not the only option.

Finally, while a large number of people work in healthcare, the vast majority of the population does not. And even among those who do ... doctors offices are generally not open on Memorial Day or Labor Day (the 2 holidays mentioned). Nor is every health care worker expected to work those days. Schools cannot and should not tailor their schedules to a very small population. Eg, there is one poster here who has mentioned that she needs to be at work very early -- is it 6 am? A doctor friend starts equally early. So perhaps yeshivas should start at 5:30, to allow people like her to drop their kids off before work.
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flowerpower









  


Post  Wed, Aug 08 2018, 12:49 pm
teachkids wrote:
I do want to point out that often the administrators are still working, often in the school building, on those days off. They don't take those days off despite "making the decision". As a regular teacher, I have walked into school on vacation day to pick something up or drop something off, and the administrators are hard at work, often doing things that can't get done when students are in school.


Some work throughout summer preparing for the new year. Just last night the secretary called to ask me a question.
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nylon









  


Post  Thu, Aug 09 2018, 8:49 am
The typical US instructional year is 180 days. Some Jewish schools have less and I am always shocked when I hear about how short some schools are.

In other countries that have a 6 week summer break (UK, Australia) they have more vacation time during the year. Most Western countries have 180-190 days of school a year. But plenty have an 8 week or 2 month break in July/August.

Now, I happen to think the US summer break is too long. In some places it's 12 weeks! That's too big a break.

Being closed on secular holidays is a sign of respect for the country and don't forget, especially outside of NY/NJ, not all the teachers are Jewish. There may be good reasons for it.

The big issue is that the US is not family friendly, doesn't give days off to parents, doesn't give enough vacation time, doesn't subsidize childcare outside of school. I think summer vacation should be shortened but you'd still have time off to cover. If we wanted to increase instructional time, we'd have to pay teachers more.
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amother




Linen


Post  Thu, Aug 09 2018, 11:48 am
I believe my kids do need all that time in the summer to regroup. My kids are good students who work hard and listen to their teachers. They need time in the summer to regroup, to have time to sleep late and get up late if want to and just not stick to a schedule. They still do summer hw with skills I give them to practice like math/reading... but they do need the entire summer to regroup. Even I remember as a student myself who was hard working and did all my work...I needed the entire summer to regroup.

And, talking about running the school day longer, well, I noticed that some of my kids don't learn the material as well from the english teachers as from the rebbe bec. by the time, the afternoon "hits" around 1:00, they are exhausted from focusing. I spend a lot of time reteaching some of the math skills that I know was taught in school.

So, while I do understand the problem for working parents to end so early or give off a lot in the summer, most kids can't really be learning for so long, sitting and listening or focusing on work....

Also, teaching is not done when teachers leave the school. There is so much grading and preparing that teachers need to do at home. Even if the teacher is a veteran teacher, there is always so much that the teacher needs to prep to "tweak" the lesson for certain students depending on their levels and all the grading is not something that can be done in advance. Especially with the new common core such that if the curriculum changes, then the teachers have more preparation for the new material. Teaching is not a 1 to 3 job. While maybe in some schools, the principals may not demand a lot of preparation from the teacher, but in other schools, the administrators expect a lot from the teachers in terms of preparation. It never ends because teachers always have to think about new ideas and how to "get to " each child and prepare for that as well.

Yes, I still agree that it is a problem with the vacation days during the year that with so many days before yom tiv, how can working parents manage especially since most women have to work to be able to afford tuition. But, I also dont understand how parents who work who get home at 5 or 6 can drive to pick up their child at 4:30 during presidents week or xmas week bec if there is school, there is usually no bus. Im struggling with this too. Even if I get a babysitter, not every babysitter can drive.

I do think that even as hard as teachers work, giving off a lot of time before yom tiv is a luxury that most women don't have so I do think the schools should not give off so much time before yom tiv.

But,who cares what I think? My kids schools have the events for the parents in the daytime as if nobody is working to pay tuition!!
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amother




Khaki


Post  Thu, Aug 09 2018, 10:59 pm
Schools can't win. Someone is always going to be unhappy.

In general schools give off before yom tov because children get an unbelievable chinuch from their parents and families on these days, cooking, baking, cleaning, building a sukkah, decorating the sukkah whatever, if done with joy can be more meaningful than anything a teacher can say. Being responsible to babysit or help builds responsibility and community mindedness that schools just can't give over.

As far as legal holidays, parents who do have off enjoy the opportunity to spend down time with their children.

Yes today many mothers aren't home and this is a huge problem, but for many people these are days that build memories for a lifetime.

Also keep in mind, teachers don't choose when to work. The administration decides that.
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amother




Jetblack


Post  Thu, Aug 09 2018, 11:12 pm
amother wrote:
Schools can't win. Someone is always going to be unhappy.

In general schools give off before yom tov because children get an unbelievable chinuch from their parents and families on these days, cooking, baking, cleaning, building a sukkah, decorating the sukkah whatever, if done with joy can be more meaningful than anything a teacher can say. Being responsible to babysit or help builds responsibility and community mindedness that schools just can't give over.

As far as legal holidays, parents who do have off enjoy the opportunity to spend down time with their children.

Yes today many mothers aren't home and this is a huge problem, but for many people these are days that build memories for a lifetime.

[b]Also keep in mind, teachers don't choose when to work. The administration decides that.


Thanks! As a teacher I've been feeling quite attacked on this thread but I just show up when I'm told to!
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amother




Puce


Post  Fri, Aug 10 2018, 2:52 am
amother wrote:
Schools can't win. Someone is always going to be unhappy.

In general schools give off before yom tov because children get an unbelievable chinuch from their parents and families on these days, cooking, baking, cleaning, building a sukkah, decorating the sukkah whatever, if done with joy can be more meaningful than anything a teacher can say. Being responsible to babysit or help builds responsibility and community mindedness that schools just can't give over.

As far as legal holidays, parents who do have off enjoy the opportunity to spend down time with their children.

Yes today many mothers aren't home and this is a huge problem, but for many people these are days that build memories for a lifetime.

Also keep in mind, teachers don't choose when to work. The administration decides that.


In some schools it is not even the administration, it is the board of education/ board of directors of the school with some input from the administration. Certainly not the teachers.
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israeli83









  


Post  Fri, Aug 10 2018, 8:11 am
Interesting thread. So this made me count the days my kids were at school for 2017-2018... and it came out to 168!! This is in nyc. We had a few snowstorms and I think they took off around 3 days as well. I was always concerned about this. I always felt like it’s not enough days in the year that the kids are at school and we’re paying a fortune for this. I’m going to have to ask people who send to public how many days of school they had, but it feels like more. Not to mention the half days on Fridays... I think yeshivas should take those half days in consideration and perhaps add more days. It’s very frustrating that they give off on erev yom tov... that is NOT necessary! At least they can do half days for erev yom tov. I understand it’s mainly for the school staff. But what about all the other working moms that come home later than teachers and don’t have much time to cook and clean for holidays?? We somehow manage. I think schools should hear us complain more about this. But then they’ll increase tuition for extra days and that I can’t afford.
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amother




Burlywood


Post  Fri, Aug 10 2018, 9:05 am
israeli83 wrote:
Interesting thread. So this made me count the days my kids were at school for 2017-2018... and it came out to 168!! This is in nyc. We had a few snowstorms and I think they took off around 3 days as well. I was always concerned about this. I always felt like it’s not enough days in the year that the kids are at school and we’re paying a fortune for this. I’m going to have to ask people who send to public how many days of school they had, but it feels like more. Not to mention the half days on Fridays... I think yeshivas should take those half days in consideration and perhaps add more days. It’s very frustrating that they give off on erev yom tov... that is NOT necessary! At least they can do half days for erev yom tov. I understand it’s mainly for the school staff. But what about all the other working moms that come home later than teachers and don’t have much time to cook and clean for holidays?? We somehow manage. I think schools should hear us complain more about this. But then they’ll increase tuition for extra days and that I can’t afford.


It wont be a fair comparison if you ask people at public school how many days they studied. You need to compare total hours in class. If your school finishes later than public school, then it's worth 1.2 or 1.4 or whatever days of public school.
I should print this thread to everyone in Israel who cries about our 'short' school yr of 219 days (for schools that teach 6 days a week and have a short Friday. Schools with 5 days a week and longer days only need 188 I think).
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israeli83









  


Post  Fri, Aug 10 2018, 9:56 am
amother wrote:
It wont be a fair comparison if you ask people at public school how many days they studied. You need to compare total hours in class. If your school finishes later than public school, then it's worth 1.2 or 1.4 or whatever days of public school.
I should print this thread to everyone in Israel who cries about our 'short' school yr of 219 days (for schools that teach 6 days a week and have a short Friday. Schools with 5 days a week and longer days only need 188 I think).


You have a point. Jewish schools in my area do have the one extra hour, Monday till Thursday more than in public. However, on fridays they have the one less hour than public. I still think that those erev yom tovs should have half days in schools though.
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amother




Slateblue


Post  Fri, Aug 10 2018, 10:32 am
amother wrote:


In general schools give off before yom tov because children get an unbelievable chinuch from their parents and families on these days, cooking, baking, cleaning, building a sukkah, decorating the sukkah whatever, if done with joy can be more meaningful than anything a teacher can say. Being responsible to babysit or help builds responsibility and community mindedness that schools just can't give over.



Having school on the days they're supposed to be offering classes is NOT considered babysitting. And why can't the kids get that unbelievable chinuch later in the day when classes are out for the day? How are they getting that unbelievable chinuch when they're either at a baby-sitters house, or someone's watching them all day, until mommy and tatty get home from work to actually be available to teach them all that?

One of the biggest misconception today's day is that the minority of parents work. The majority of parents, specifically those with only young kids, are in the workforce.
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bsy









  


Post  Fri, Aug 10 2018, 11:25 am
I believe public school in nyc requires 180 days.
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amother




Ginger


Post  Fri, Aug 10 2018, 11:41 am
I always thought giving off for erev yom tov was because so many people travel (to grandparents and whatnot), that there would be a lot of absentees so didnt pay for it to be a regular day. Not so teachers could cook.
That said, the schools seem to give more days off than when I went to school....
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keym









  


Post  Fri, Aug 10 2018, 11:57 am
OK. So I looked at the BF calender in Lakewood. Yes its insane.
Why do we need to have off Fri before sukkos?
Why do we need a full week off before Pesach? The boys have just Thurs and Fri (Seder night is Fri night). Why do the girls need Tues and wed? I actually have no problem with the older grades being off to help, but first graders don't need a full week off.

I also have a boy heavy family so I can't help but wonder why we can't go by the boys schedule. Fri/sun for chanuka vacation, Fri/Sun midwinter vacation. 1/2 day on erev shavuos. Only 2 days off before Pesach, 11/2 days off before sukkos.
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amother




Olive


Post  Fri, Aug 10 2018, 11:57 am
amother wrote:
I am surprised at the entitled views of people on this thread. Schools are not babysitting services. Their job is to provide your children with an education, not to make sure you never have to watch your kids when it's inconvenient for you.

Yes, you pay a lot of tuition. And still, schools struggle to pay their teachers. They are not pocketing your hard earned money and enjoying the day off at your expense. They charge you for the service they provide. You wouldn't put your kid in public school because you want a frum education. How are the schools supposed to run if they aren't charging enough tuition to pay their expenses?

I understand many mothers have to work in order to pay the bills. But I would like to think that it's only the minority who have such full time, high stress jobs that they can't take the time to watch their own children every now and then, or to attend a Chumash play once a year. It seems to me that people have skewed priorities here.


It's not that my job is so high stress that I can't take off, it's that I work to pay the bills. If I don't work, I don't make money, so I can't pay the bills, including the tuition bill.

My elementary school dds have off every erev Yom Tov, including Taanis Esther, even if Purim is on Sunday. They have off every Isru Chag, and a full week before Pesach. Chanukah vacation, midwinter vacation, and then two weeks after midwinter comes in service day, so I have to take off again.

I'm not looking for a babysitting service, but they have to be realistic about the fact that many families in their school have two working parents. And we need to work in order to pay them.
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