Thursday, July 31, 2008

School starts Aug. 8

As we prepare stories for our Back-to-School tab it hit me that I would hate to have to start school this early.

Summer was a great time "back in my day." Even though I often complained back then about having to work in the tobacco patch, but it would suck to spend the majority of August inside instead of down at the fishing or swimming hole!

Times change and in some school systems they have already gone to the year-round school calendar.

It just seems that we adults have managed suck the fun out of everything and we wonder why kids seem distant and want to play video games all day....

Oh, well... here's to the death of summer.


Blogger Something to say said...

It is a shame that kids, parents and teachers can't have the month of August off as vacation time and have school started after Labor Day.

These shortened summers really began years ago when the Kentucky legislature began mandating the number of instructional days (which later turned in to the exact amount of instructional time) that a school system must have in the course of a school year.

When school systems began adding the week long fall breaks to school calendars to appease vacation weary adults, it really gave local Boards of Education no choice but to start the school year earlier.

It's tough on teens that count on summer jobs for their spending money. It's tough on parents who try to plan vacations around camps, mission trips, VBS, sports schedules and practices. It's tough on all of those school employees who have to get everything ready at the schools for another long and busy school year.

As we gear up for another school year, my sympathy really goes out to our school bus drivers and their passenger kids on these extremely hot summer days as they travel without the comfort of air conditioning.

If the Kentucky school systems could resist to having the week long breaks in the fall and the spring, shortening them to just long weekends, then maybe we could all see a return to a little bit longer summer.

The annual groaning of teachers "going back to work" began back in early July when the talk of returning to classrooms began with the phrase "less than a month".

Kids (of all ages) need time to be kids.

Although Ryan, I doubt that there would be an influx of swimming hole swimmers these days because there is probably some state mandate or environmental regulation against that too!

5:27 AM, August 01, 2008  
Anonymous Ben Wiles said...

For many students at TCCHS, "school" has already started.

51 days.

That's how long this year's summer "vacation" was for kids at TCCHS involved in fall sports. Practices began July 15, one month before the first competition.

A TCCHS freshman band member will spend 102 hours in the months of July and August rehearsing for their first performance. That's longer than they'll spend in their English class the entire first semester.

Then there's the impact on churches. Trying to squeeze a quality summer youth program into seven weekends is just this side of impossible, especially if the kids are also having to work. Vacations can be scheduled around, but wheat cutting waits for no man.

But what can be done? Parents are increasingly choosing to hold boys back a year in early elementary school so they can have an advantage in high school sports. Schools in Tennessee are cutting field trip, computer, and even textbook budgets so they can fund athletic programs and field construction.

If this is what high school is becoming, perhaps we should not be asking "why are classes starting so early," but "why do they bother with classes at all?"

1:39 PM, August 05, 2008  

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