Thursday, April 10, 2014

PRDTU offers different interpretation of two week break tempest

As they say there are two sides to every story and for the accounts of the recently defeated proposal for a two week break for School District 52, the PRDTU is making their points by way of a letter.

In a letter to the editor of the Weekly newspaper (along with a brief reproach for the paper on the concept of balance in journalism) Kathy Murphy outlines the PRTDU position on the theme.

Providing some background on the topic and taking issue with the School District on how the proposed two week break was sent to the shelf for another year, stating that the Teachers were not to blame for the way events played out.

According to her review of events, the main stumbling blocks to the prospect of a two week spring break came down to the timeline of the discussions and the compensation for Teachers on Call and temporary teachers.

Two groups who according to Ms. Murphy would be required to work longer hours, but would not be paid for that time put in.

The letter wraps up that the local teachers "were not willing to achieve a two week spring break on the backs of our most vulnerable members"...

Over at the School District, other than a short couple of mentions in local media, no background on the process, or how the decision was made to stay with a one week spring break was provided at all.

Once again for the most part leaving the parents and students of those attending the schools of SD52 in the dark on the discussions that were involved on the issue.

Also left off the distribution list was the wider pool of taxpayers, who provide a share of the funding for School Operations.

The School District does have a website, not that they make much use of it of late. As it seems that using their portal isn't high on the to do list, particularly when it comes to delivering information to the residents of the District in anything resembling a timely manner.

Which is too bad, as for an item of such importance as any proposed change to the school year, background information would be rather helpful to the theme.

It was one issue which they could have reached out to parents to explain the entire process pro and con.

Instead,  as we outlined on the blog in February, other than a short notice when the topic was first brought up  there wasn't much to discuss, at least in public it seems.

Of note from the whole tempest, is the fact that there has been no mention in the talking points of either side of the discussion, as to what impact the two week break might have on student achievement in the classroom.

Nor, how they were planning to implement the two week break, as far as making up the extra week of vacation time and what would be required of the students at District schools.

And while the monetary aspects of the discussion and the impact on School District administrative items are important, once again on this item, like many other issues, the need to provide for more information for students and their parents just didn't make it to the discussion table.

You can find more items on education in the Northwest available on our archive page.

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