Do you stay after school for extra help?

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Ms.Holyoke, Oct 30, 2019.

  1. Ms.Holyoke

    Ms.Holyoke Connoisseur

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    This year, I’ve decided to focus on having a better work life balance. My new school does not require us to provide after school help. My team teachers, however, have students in their room after school a lot. Honestly, most of my kids are doing fine and don’t need it. I try to work with the struggling kids during our intervention block.

    The sped teacher is always asking me to provide extra help after school. It started with saying that we need a consequence for a student who does not try or complete work. She said that anytime he does not complete work, he will need to stay after school. I don’t think this is really fair because I can’t stay after 30-40 minutes a day to make him complete work! I told her this and she said that it doesn’t need to be for so long. I also asked about a gen ed student to see if she could complete a test in her room at a separate table during our intervention block. She told me that it’s best not to and that I should ask mom if she can come in early or stay late. I’m just going to have her do it in the hallway with a clipboard.

    Am I being unreasonable? I often have after school commitments (PDs, plans with friends) and I also have a dog that I need to walk right after school. Next week, I have after school PDs that I signed up for on three afternoons. And I usually have to go home and do some work still for the next day! I feel like my coworker shouldn’t expect me to tutor after school every day.
     
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  3. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    I'm not a middle school teacher, but there is no way I would stay after contract time to work with students, unless I was paid extra money for it. I have even decided to stop volunteering for unpaid committees that meet after school. I used to do it in order to look and feel invested and involved, but it's just not worth the cost to my personal life.
     
  4. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    I tutor after school, but I am paid very well for doing so. I pick the group of kids I work with, so I choose kids who need it but are also well behaved. With so few slots available, I'm not wasting the extra time on kids who are going to ruin it for everyone. Because of this and the fact that there is really no oversight at all/I can run it however I want, it's much easier than my regular school day teaching. I make about an extra $300-400 (depending on how many days off we have) after taxes per month.

    We got a grant to run after school programming. Prior to getting that, some of our teachers, including my teammate, provided free after school tutoring or clubs. I always thought they were nuts and would never consider doing something like that for free.

    I think it's harder at some schools if it' just an unwritten expectation that you do these things. At my first school, literally every other teacher regularly kept kids in for lunch/recess (they'd have the kids bring their food to their rooms). I remember saying something about not doing that because it's also my lunch time and a teacher looking at me like I had 3 heads. I held firm on not keeping kids in, but I definitely stuck out for doing so.
     
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  5. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Rarely. It is more the norm in my building to have kids in at recess or lunch recess to catch up or for extra help.
     
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  6. swansong1

    swansong1 Virtuoso

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    Some teachers feel they aren't doing their job properly unless they devote every waking moment to supporting their students. It has been my experience that these are the teachers who burn out sooner.
    I commend you for working on your work/life balance early in your career.
     
  7. Ima Teacher

    Ima Teacher Maven

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    I stay after once a week until 4. I’m usually there until then anyway just because I’m getting ready for the next day and avoiding the after-school traffic. Our last busses leave around 3:15.

    Each teacher on our team stays until 4 one day a week. No kids stay on Wednesday because we all have PLC’s.
     
  8. RainStorm

    RainStorm Phenom

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    If she says the student needs to complete the work after school, ask her what time SHE will be there to do that? Needs to complete a test on a clipboard? Again, which would be better for HER -- before school or after? You could even offer to let her use your room!

    I love how she is so generous with YOUR time.

    You don't need to justify yourself to her. The answer is "I'm not available." Be a broken record and repeat as often as necessary.
     
  9. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Last school it wasn't unheard of, but far more common was keeping kids in from lunch/recess. The same reasoning as shared here.

    I daresay it's likely more about appearances than results. The kids who need such extra time likely need something more official and specialized.

    Growing up it wasn't unheard of to ask a teacher for help after school, but I'm 99% sure those teachers were still on contract. Plus, these were more of once-in-a-blue-moon incidents.

    Definitely not a thing at my current school. The kids are super young and the majority bus. And the powers that be seem to be paranoid about contract time being abused by extra requests (actually makes me wonder if something happened once in the district to lead to "respect the contract time!")
     
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  10. Tired Teacher

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    Same here! There is no way I'd let her dictate my time like that! I am guessing you don't have a union or that would not be happening.
    I have done after school tutoring. I was asked to do it by the P and paid well for it too....
    The other times I did it was because no one wanted to do it, but someone had to. There was a grant for it and we'd take turns w/ 1 day a week and rotate weeks for it.
    Even though it paid decent, none of us appreciated having to give up our time. If the kids did not learn it during the day, how on earth are kids going to learn it after school mixed with kids on different grade levels? Most of the parents used it as after school care so the tutoring group often consisted of many grade levels and as many kids as would be in a regular class. It was a waste of time for all involved.
    If your Sped teacher is insisting the kid needs the time after school so badly, ask her when SHE is going to tutor him. That is a totally unreasonable request imo.
     
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  11. ecteach

    ecteach Devotee

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    We are required to stay one day a week after school to tutor for free. Every school in our district offers this. Actually, I'd rather do this, than attend a worthless meeting........but we have those too. Sigh.
    I keep kids almost everyday during my planning period. This is when I do my reading assessments and interventions. Since these are the kids who can't do much of the work in the elective classes anyways, the teachers never mind.
    I don't think I've had a planning period without a students for about 3 weeks. It's the only time I can get these things completed.
     
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  12. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Cohort

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    Wow! Do you not have a union? I don't see how they can force you to work after school or during your prep with no pay. It scares me that this could make its way here someday. I wish teachers could have united across the US many yrs ago to get better working conditions and pay.
    It is good some states and districts have put their feet down lately. I just think we'd all have it better if we were united. I know where I work, certain things are the "norm" that are not during contract hours, but we have the option to say, "No!" and P's know it. They could make your life miserable though if they wanted to. I still will not do somethings unless I want to or feel the need for it too much past contract hours. I probably donate an hour of my time daily doing work anyways.They ask too much of us and give us too little time to do it often.
     
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  13. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    My guess is that the time is already built into the contract time, which is another thing entirety.

    This may be optimism speaking, but I think enough people are aware of laws these days that the average school would find it difficult to confidently enforce unpaid time.
     
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  14. a2z

    a2z Maven

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    I doubt it. Much of the public think of teachers as salaried workers, not hourly. They actually resent the call of teachers to only have to work "contracted hours".
     
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  15. Tired Teacher

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    This is not the case here. They go about it in a slick way. There is no possible way to get your work done while teaching during contract hours. That is why I usually donated an hr a day! There are ways to cut corners. There are certain grade levels who can check/answer email throughout the day or grade papers w/kids in the room. Sometimes you can fill out paperwork w/ older kids in class or if you have a class you can take your eyes off of for a few minutes. If you are gutsy enough, you could call parents.
    I think different schools have different prep times than others. Our prep was decreased to the minimum because when you have ED kids in a class, the specials teachers need you to stay now. They can't handle some of them. ( For good reason....)
     
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  16. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    The public perspective is likely true, but all it takes is for a teacher to say "this isn't in the contract".

    How will the school prevent the teacher from making a legal fuss?
     
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  17. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Prep time is often a school/district thing, usually within contract hours.

    But flat-out working outside of contract hours is a far trickier thing to defend if one actually found themselves at court.
     
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  18. Tired Teacher

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    They can prevent it by saying things like : Your lesson plans, grade book, home contacts, or whatever isn't done. Teachers get inundated with IEP meetings that take a long time. The only way for most teachers here to get it done, is to spend their own time finishing them. Admin wants to walk in and see you teaching. If you were doing other teaching tasks, they'd say you should do whatever when the kids were not there. ( Before or after school.)
     
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  19. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    This is still a far cry from an extra scheduled hour after contract.
     
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  20. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Cohort

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    I guess the time is not an extra contracted hour, but IDK anyone who can get "the basics" done during the contracted hours. If you didn't get the stuff done, you'd be considered negligent and might even lose your job. If nothing else, you'd catch a lot of flack for it. Officially, they do not tell anyone they must stay an extra hour and you could finish it all at home. This is why I say they are slick about it.
     
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  21. Tired Teacher

    Tired Teacher Cohort

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    Oh, I should add, I am much faster than your average bear at doing things like planning because I know the standards and pacing guides inside and out. Also, there are many units I could do very similar to the way I have done them before. One thing they should teach students in college are the standards of their grade levels.
    We spent yrs writing the number and words of the standards in our lesson plans. It stunk when having to do that, but it has saved me so much time when I watch teachers who never had to experienced that.
     
  22. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    In my district, that's exactly how we are treated. We do all sign a contract that states our the number of days we work in a particular year and our salary, but there are no specifics beyond that. Meetings, work hours, and other responsibilities are not specifically outlined in the contract. We are told that we are salaried employees, and we are expected to get the job done. My district does have a committee that meets regularly to discuss compensation and benefits, as well as a committee where the admin meets with teacher and association reps to discuss concerns, but we do not have a functioning union and don't have the need for one.
     
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  23. MntnHiker

    MntnHiker Rookie

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    Our contract day ends 20 min after students are done, so I stay until then, but no longer. I typically never have students come in during that time for extra help, though. I just prep stuff for the next day. I live an hour away from school and also have a dog I need to let out, so no, I never stay later than my contract time.

    I do get to school 30 min earlier than required, but not to provide extra help; I like getting there early to get grading and stuff done uninterrupted. If students come in during that time, I'll help them, but it's rare they come in. I do a lot of workshopping in class where I can conference with students individually and help them at that time, so it's rare they need to come in extra.
     
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  24. ecteach

    ecteach Devotee

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    No union. Public school. I was required to stay on a Friday until 10:00 for a school function, and then also required to stay the next Monday until 7:00 for a school function just last week. It's ridiculous, and almost feels like charity work at times. I have just gotten to the point where I try my very best to focus on the shining light--the students. This is truly the only way I get through. I have a great group of kids. In this way, I am blessed.
     
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  25. Tired Teacher

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    OMGoodness, ! They are going to burn you out young if you continue this. Is this a private school? I taught at 1 for a year until I realized they could do that! We were actually forced to have Open House until 9pm monthly. If your parents left early, or didn't show,, you could go home. Finally, a seasoned teacher showed me how to make that happen. It involved a simple step. Drop the notes in the garbage can.
    Yes, the shining light is the students who make the job fun. If you can afford to do charity work, that is good. But, you should be able to set your own hours then.
    Are all of the districts around you like that? I'd look for a new job before you become like me....a tired teacher! :)
     
  26. vickilyn

    vickilyn Magnifico

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    In the public school where I worked last, teachers were required to work until 20 minutes after the second bus ran, or about 3:30, on Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday. Wednesday until 3:30 was mandatory staff meeting. On Friday, we could leave at 2:30, which was 20 minutes after dismissal for the first buses. Usually a teacher helped with a club/activity on either Monday, Tuesday, or Thursday, so they were considered available for tutoring 2 days a week. I should state that teachers were expected to be in the building by 7:00, but some barely squeaked in by 7:25. Contract time ran until 3:30, mostly to make sure that there was enough staff present during the week to monitor and supervise the number of students in the building until the second buses ran. Staff meetings were canceled about half of the time. I didn't feel that it was unjust hours, but maybe I'm not as picky. I did feel that our salary was higher than most of the region, so maybe that mitigated any feelings of being abused.
     
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  27. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    Really? Wow!

    We have established contract hours and two days of comp time to make up for Parent-Teacher Conference. If we're supposed to be at something, extra, they're damn sure to put it in writing.
     
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  28. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    I'm fortunate to work in a district with reasonable admin and a reasonable school board. Our district is one where we all see ourselves as being on the same team. Although we are asked to work hard, we aren't asked to do anything truly unreasonable. If we ever can't attend an event outside of the regular school day, our building-level admin are open to us not attending. The district-level admin voluntarily meet with a small group of teacher representatives on a monthly basis to discuss concerns that we have (such as too many after-school meetings, safety concerns, curriculum issues, etc.). They also meet monthly with another committee to discuss the salary schedule and benefits, and we have a separate calendar committee with teacher representatives. We have a voice and avenues for sharing concerns. We do have regular work hours for a typical school day, but those are not "contract" hours. Sometimes our work doesn't fit neatly into those specific hours, and we are asked to go above and beyond the typical work day (after school meetings, concerts, conferences, etc.). Our building and district admin value us enough to listen to and address the concerns we raise without the need for an "us versus them" union. Having previously been part of a union, I appreciate the climate of the district that I'm currently in. I am much happier occasionally putting in extra time or hard work that is asked of me than being in a district with an antagonistic climate. We don't need to have every last responsibility and reward in writing because the admin and school board support and respect us.
     
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  29. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    I've never been in a union (non-union state) but I admit I like knowing what is expected of me without being manipulated.
     
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  30. Tired Teacher

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    Bella,THe school I worked at the longest sounds somewhat like yours. WE did not need a union there because teachers were valued, respected. and appreciated. It was not just words...it was the way we were treated. A new young teacher got terminally ill. In order for her insurance to be in effect, she had to be at school for so many days.
    The admin arranged quietly for 2 of the best aides to teach that class. The employees helped her into a wheel chair and she just had to sit while she was therefor a few days to keep her coverage. Once she had it, she was good to take off on sick leave from a bank until she passed away.
    I probably get pd 2x as much here, but the cost of living is probably 2x > than there. I worked 100x harder there and was more willing to give up my time because of the climate.
    Here we have what some call a strong union. The relationship between teachers/union has been adversarial since my 1st day here. However, they lack respect for teachers here. We are seen as a dime a dozen. If I quit tomorrow, there'd be a line of people wanting my job. I am so thankful for having a union because I have zippo trust here w/ higher ups. I can only imagine how bad it'd be w/out 1. I think it may depend on the district's need for teachers ( IDK for sure.) The 1st district I worked for needed teachers and had to recruit out of state even.
     
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  31. bella84

    bella84 Aficionado

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    Our expectations are laid out pretty clearly via calendars and the staff handbooks. They just aren't part of a formal contract agreement. My gut tells me that our climate is as good as it is precisely because we don't have a defined contract outlining every single responsibility and reward. Our admin and school board treat us like the salaried professionals that we are, and that sometimes means being flexible with schedules and responsibilities. I think of it being like my husband's job and my dad's job... They both work for private companies in fields far from education. They are salaried and sometimes have to go in to work early, stay late, travel, bring work home, etc. There is no contract that outlines their work hours or duties. They are just expected to get their work done, no matter what it takes, and they are respected as professionals. That's pretty similar to how things are in my district. Personally, I'll take the respect over a formal contract.
     
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  32. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    You sound like you have a great thing going, but not all places have the balance of reasonable necessity and how much can we pile on a teacher.
     
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  33. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    I would not stay for extra help unless it was required for ALL teachers. Not just a chosen few.
     
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  34. Backroads

    Backroads Aficionado

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    This is a good point. I have no qualms if it is simply part of the terms of teaching there and all teachers have their "office hours". But expecting one or two teachers to stay after, and expected by someone who isn't in charge, is ridiculous.
     
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