Entitled to breaks during workday?

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by ElizabethJ, Sep 5, 2015.

  1. ElizabethJ

    ElizabethJ Guest

    Sep 5, 2015

    Hello everyone. I am a newly credentialed teacher and just took a position as an Aide to get my foot in the door with a highly prestigious California school district. I am fully prepared to work my butt off, but am perplexed that I have NO BREAK in my daily 6-hour schedule. I also am expected to create tailored lessons to meet the instructional needs of various groups of students that I'll pull out of class, yet I also have NO SCHEDULED PREP TIME. I asked about the prep time, and was told 10 minutes might be squeezed in somewhere.

    Just wandering what you seasoned teachers thought. I am aware of the time and effort required to deliver effective and meaningful lessons, and I look forward to the opportunity. At the same time, I'm not a robot, and need some nourishment of food and drink. Moreover, I understand 6 hours of lessons cannot be planned in 10 minutes.

    Is this legal - the school not providing a break? And am I a sucker for cranking out lessons having to do the prep on my own unpaid time? Or should I just suck it up? I am apprehensive about saying anything because I don't want to be seen as stirring the pot. Your feedback please. Thank you so much.
     
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  3. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    Sep 5, 2015

    Your contract will clearly state what your planning period "rights" are and as aide, they are different than a full-time teacher (at least in my district). Contact your Union rep about your contract and rights before you approach your Admin. After that, whether you chose to hold your school/Admin to the contract is up to you.

    For example, at the secondary level in my district, if you teach more than two preps, you are supposed to get two planning periods. It is very rare to actually get two plans and it is a contract violation most teachers are willing to put up with. By the end of last year, I had taught 5 preps (US History, World History, Gov't, a Senior elective and a mastery class) and I only got one planning period but it was not worth brining up to Admin or the Union.
     
  4. Missy

    Missy Aficionado

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    In my district most aides do not have a union, but they also rarely plan lessons.

    If you do have a contract and union, they need to be utilized and enforced, or they are worthless, and at some point the association will be considered as having waived its rights to enforce.
     
  5. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Our educational assistants (aides) do not get planning time, but they do get a lunch break, although it isn't at the same time that teachers have their break.
     
  6. vateacher757

    vateacher757 Cohort

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    Sep 5, 2015

    In my area aides don't have "planning" they just have lunch and if perhaps they are an inclusion aide and are not scheduled to be in a class during a block/period then that could be considered "planning" time but they can be pulled anywhere needed at that time. Technically aides have nothing to "plan"
     
  7. jenglish97

    jenglish97 Devotee

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    Sep 5, 2015

    I was a full-time classroom aide when I started my teaching career 18 years ago. I was part of the Union because I was full-time with benefits. I was entitled to a 30 minute lunch break and 2 15-minute breaks.

    I was an aide in the classroom which means I did not write/plan lessons. My teacher gave me the lessons plans for the week so I knew what we were teaching. I would help out by creating and making things to go along with the lessons. They were done through out the school day. Sometimes I would bring it home to complete but most of what I did was during the school day.

    You need to read your contract very closely to see what they are expecting you to do as aide.
     
  8. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    Sep 5, 2015

    My aides get two 15 minute breaks per day but eat lunch with the students. There's no way I would ever make them plan lessons. If they have to carry out a lesson it is fully prepared ahead of time by me. Aides should not require prep time because they should not be planning lessons.
     
  9. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    Sep 5, 2015

    Our full-time (7 hour) aides do not write lesson plans; they are not credentialed teachers. They do, however, teach small groups while under the direction of the classroom teacher (there are NO circumstances that allow an aide to teach alone in a classroom--no exceptions whatsoever).

    Regarding breaks: our two full time aides get a 20 minute break and a 30 minute lunch.

    If you are working at a CA Public School, you are protected under the CSEA (California School Employees Association).
     
  10. ECE ABC

    ECE ABC Comrade

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    Sep 5, 2015

    I am also working as a full time Para (Special Education) with a full benefit package and we have a great union!

    I am a former PreK Teacher & ECE Director and as a Para I get a 30 minute lunch break each day with a 15 minute break as well.

    Any Para who works a 4 hour day gets a 15 min break and if you work 6 hrs in a day you get a 30 min lunch..if you work MORE than a 6 hour day...you get both. This is per our contract!

    I work a 7 hour day now, because I work in a Sped Program so that's why I get both.

    Its really unfair that you don't get a break for lunch, I've never heard of that before.


    Per our union contract we NEVER do anything on our own time and we are not expected to do any planning whatsoever but then again, I am in a Sped program...my job is my students that I am assigned and I am working closely with a Sped Teacher who does all of that!


    It really makes a difference having such a strong union.
     
  11. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    If there is no union, ask your boss or whoever is in charge of the paras about lunch. My para does get a lunch, but it's unpaid. She has to clock out for it. She gets two 10 minute breaks that are paid. She does teach small groups, but anything she does has to be under my supervision. I've taught her a few remedial activities for each grade level so I can just ask her to teach xyz and she knows what that means without me writing detailed plans for her every day. She does try to take things home to work on sometimes, but I try to stop her when I see that happening. IMO, she doesn't get paid enough for that!
     
  12. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Paras who work 6-hour days In my district get 35 minutes. Paras with 4-hour days get 20 minutes.
     
  13. TXforever

    TXforever Companion

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    When I was an aide, I got a lunch break but no planning time. I didn't plan lessons or anything. The SpecEd teacher did, and I just followed them.
     
  14. ElizabethJ

    ElizabethJ Guest

    Sep 6, 2015

    Thank you all for such speedy replies. I hear most of you saying that aides do not/ are not expected to plan lessons, and that is the case with the other aides at this school. However, I AM expected to create my own lessons (I am a credentialed teacher) and it is a solid 6-hour block just going from class to class and pulling students out to work with them in small groups, doing activities which I plan and prepare. I was just speechless with the admin that a break to take care of basic human needs was so blatantly omitted, not to mention the the missing prep time.
     
  15. Missy

    Missy Aficionado

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    In my district many aides are certified teachers, yet they are expected to do what any aide would be assigned.
     
  16. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    Here as well.
     
  17. LouiseB

    LouiseB Cohort

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    If you are doing what a certified teacher is to do, IMO, you should be paid for a certified teacher. But in this case you are hired as a para. I think the school is wanting you to work part of the time as a certified teacher but are wanting to PAY you para wages.
     
  18. YoungTeacherGuy

    YoungTeacherGuy Phenom

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    I would like to add that we do have 10 part-time (3 hours/day) aides. They do not get a break during their shift.

    None of our aides are credentialed teachers. Most of them have the minimum educational requirements (12 college units).
     
  19. smalltowngal

    smalltowngal Multitudinous

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    Sep 8, 2015

    If you look at our paras and even the SPED teachers' schedules, there is no scheduled lunch or planning period like the regular ed teachers' schedules. Our paras do get a 30 minute lunch. They are not expected to teach or plan lessons as we are full inclusion so they are in the classroom helping the students in the gen ed. This allows them to break when they need.
     
  20. Caesar753

    Caesar753 Multitudinous

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    Sep 8, 2015

    I think that you are being taken advantage of. You aren't being compensated like a full-time teacher, so you shouldn't be expected to do the duties of a full-time teacher.
     

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