Taking a child out of school for a parade...

Discussion in 'General Education' started by JadeCrane, Oct 31, 2008.

  1. JadeCrane

    JadeCrane Comrade

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    I am just wondering what your thoughts are, as educators, on this issue...

    The Philadelphia Phillies have just won the Wolrd Series. First time in over 20 years. Most people are just beside themselves here. I can appreciate a healthy enthusiasm for a sports team, espcially in an area where traditionally - well - let's face it - Philly teams are not all that great.

    I am subbing today... the day of the championship parade in downtown Philadelphia. They expect almost 2 million people to attend this parade. In the last class I had in here today (I am a computer teacher today) was missing five students. The speculation is that they are going to the parade. Now... today IS Halloween so there are in-class parties this afternoon etc. But it is also Friday and there are usually spelling tests at a minimum - often Reading and Grammar tests as well.

    How do you, as an educator, feel about a student missing school to attend a sports parade?
     
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  3. midwestteacher

    midwestteacher Cohort

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    I think a parent should have a little leeway in deciding to take their child out of class for special events. That being said, things like this shouldn't be a regular occurance. I wouldn't want to see kids taken out of school once a week to go to Grandpa's, go see a candidate speak, etc. My kids usually miss two of these types of days a year. They go deer hunting in Illinois and Kansas with dad and granddad. This is an important time for them to spend time together and to do something they enjoy. If we were a sports family, my kids might miss a day to see the Super Bowl Champs parade. We missed a couple of days a few years ago because my husband was still competing in the rodeo. He qualified for a two sets of rodeo finals that were Friday, Saturday, and Sunday and being held five hours from here.
     
  4. Mrs. Q

    Mrs. Q Cohort

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    I agree with the PP. Sometimes there are things that are really important to a family and I don't see the harm in parents taking their children out of school once or twice a year to attend special functions. That being said, some people do go overboard. My sister has always tended to take her kids out for ANY occasion and I think they've suffered academically because of it.
     
  5. New3rdTeacher

    New3rdTeacher Comrade

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    I think there are once in a lifetime chances for kids and parents to do something and share it. I had a student leave school early to see Sarah Palin speak, I thought it was great that his parents were giving him a chance to live that and have the experience. I don't think it's any harm to take a child out of school for that!
     
  6. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    I agree with the other two posters. For infrequent, but noteworthy events, I think it's okay. My dad let my sisters skip school when the braves made their amazing comeback in 1995. It was a once in a lifetime experience. That's something special that couldn't ever be recreated. I think sometimes we get so wrapped up in test scores, that we loose sight of other important things. Kids learn based on past experiences. If they've been deprived of exciting and special events, what are they to base their learning on?
     
  7. monsieurteacher

    monsieurteacher Aficionado

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    I wish I had gotten out of school when the Blue Jays won the world series... I agree... it's not every day that there is a big parade in celebration of a World Series win. A day of school in the greater scheme of things (especially a Halloween day) is not a big deal.
     
  8. Lives4Math

    Lives4Math Comrade

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    Once in a while I don't see it as a problem. However, simply like today...it's halloween and I have 4 kids absent per class (3 classes) and only one is because I know they are sick. The others I can only assume are just like the high school girls with prom....need time to get ready so they are out. Who needs that kind of time to get ready for trick or treating???? Half of my students are now thinking "i'm too old for that". Looking around my room of 30 kids now.....8 have on a costume (and myself :-D) But....I don't mind kids missing once in a while for special events. I had a child who was in rodeo's and would miss once in a while for that, in the country we always have a few missing on first days of hunting season....However I can't stand it when a parent decides to take a week or 2 long vacation in the middle of school and take the child.
     
  9. MrsC

    MrsC Multitudinous

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    We watched the Blue Jays victory parade on TV--seems like so long ago!
     
  10. Learner4Life

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    My boyfriend says I get along well with the Jr. High because of my adolescent mind... THIS CRACKED ME UP!!!
    HA I'm sorry, I'm immature.

    I agree. As long as it doesn't happen often, for every little event, I think it's fine for parents to take their kids out for some of these special events.
     
  11. mrachelle87

    mrachelle87 Fanatic

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    My son missed three days for a trip to Indianapolis for FFA, then he missed the next day for a shooting sports competition, and then he missed second hour two days later to see the specialist. I hate that it all happened at once, but because we knew about it and planned his teachers were ok with it. He is an honor student (9th grader-all A's), athlete, and very active in FFA. Sometimes it all just happens at once. All but the doctor's appointment were sponsored by the school. And the doctor is working with his football trainer and coach.

    I think that kids will remember the day of the World Series more than any math lesson. I think as long as they realize that there is consequences for "skipping" a job or school, it is ok.
     
  12. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

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    Well, if this rare event is a good enough reason for parents to take their kids out of school, I guess it's OK. However, hopefully, they're not taking their kids out of school once a month for things. That's too much!

    BTW, why is the teacher out, hmmmm? Probably going to the parade too! LOL :D (just kidding!...well, it's possible!)
     
  13. midwestteacher

    midwestteacher Cohort

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  14. stephenpe

    stephenpe Connoisseur

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    I feel like we NEED more parades. Phillies win the world series?
    GO TO THE PARADE............Univ of Fla Homecoming Parade?
    Go cause its a big deal. Weeks for family vacations? Maybe a few days or one week but not more than one and take that work to make up. Some families can only go on vacation at certain times. Family things are VERY important. Work with them. Ask the kid to do a report on the trip or something.
     
  15. silverspoon65

    silverspoon65 Enthusiast

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    I had about 10 kids absent (out of 70) for the parade (or for whatever reason). We also had 10 teachers out today for the parade. I posted about this yesterday because Joe Biden was in my town and I really wanted to take off to see him - which I think is a much more legitimate reason to take off than to see a parade.

    Besides personally being bitter, I didn't really have a problem with the kids being out - its better that its a Friday, but I also wonder about Monday - we have school Monday but not Tuesday, so I predict kids taking that day off as well.

    Personally, if I was a diehard sports fan and I had kids, I might have taken them. If I had kids and it was Obama instead of Biden, I also definitely would have taken off for that as well.
     
  16. TeacherSandra

    TeacherSandra Enthusiast

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    hmmm...I don't think it would bother me; especially if the student hasn't missed much school already.
     
  17. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    I've got to admit: it did bother me when Mayor Rudy Guiliani told the kids of NYC to cut school to go to the Yankees' parade. For a parent to make that decision is one thing, but it's not exactly showing support for education when the Mayor suggests you cut school.

    (That said, I'm a big Guliani fan after 9/11.O
     
  18. Missy99

    Missy99 Connoisseur

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    An occasion like this will leave a much more lasting memory with a child than the average lesson.

    Besides, it is NOT just a "sports parade." This is an historic moment for the city.

    Why not use the parade as a focal point for lessons? Last time I looked, baseball (which is my favorite sport, go Astros!) is full of math, and social studies, language arts and even science, and you could get many lessons out of this one event!
     
  19. Beth2004

    Beth2004 Maven

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    It doesn't bother me at all when parents decide to do that. I only get upset because I can't go too! ;)

    Being from Boston, we've had 6 parades in the last 7 years (3 Patriots, 2 Sox, 1 Celtics) and every one is a major event. I've never had the opportunity to go to one since they're always at 1 in the afternoon and I can't take the time out of work, but I think it's great that some parents take their kids.

    By the way, if you think the 20 year drought for the Phillies is a big deal, imagine the Red Sox in 2004 when it had been 86 years! :rolleyes:
     
  20. Yank7

    Yank7 Habitué

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    How often does this happen! It certainly is alright as long as the child has their parents consent.There will probably as many teachers taking off for the parade as students.
    Next year Philadelphia schools will not have this problem unless the children are allowed to travel to New York.
     
  21. Beth2004

    Beth2004 Maven

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    :spitwater:
     
  22. Tasha

    Tasha Phenom

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    I LOVE baseball! I think it is fine to do this. I also think it is fine once in a while to pick up a child early for any once in a lifetime event - even if it is seeing a candidate speak. That child will gain far more by learning to be part of a community or remembering how passionate their parents were about supporting a candidate (in what has until this election been very poor voter turnout) than they would by spelling 10 words. As long as it truly happens once, teach your kids the real things.
     
  23. Luv2Learn

    Luv2Learn Companion

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    Don't worry, it may be another 20 years before it will happen again.

    Considering the fact that it is also halloween, I'm sure that even those students that are there really don't have their attention towards their studies either.
     
  24. MsMar

    MsMar Fanatic

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    I think it's fine once in a while as long as a parent approves it. I teach close to Philly and every single class I had yesterday had 50% or less of my students there. On a typical day 0-2 are absent per class; yesterday it was 8-15. I would suspect in each class 50% of those out had parent approval and the other 50% just didn't come anyway. I was able to do a normal lesson anyway because I was already planning on cooking in every class (I teach Foods and Nutrition). It just meant I had two kitchens going in each class as opposed to five. In general though, the kids who did come to school watched a lot of movies. So I think for the most part it was a "lost" day. The kids either weren't there, or they were there and not getting a regular day of school. But I really don't blame the kids for going to the parade. I'm sure it's an experience they'll remember for a long time.
     
  25. Pisces_Fish

    Pisces_Fish Fanatic

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    Honestly, I think it depends on the kid! Case in point - I had a boy in in-school suspension for an entire day for fighting with another boy in the bathroom. The next day he was absent. The note I got from Mom the day after said, "Please excuse _____, we took him to the state fair."

    HUH? Your boy was suspended for fighting, and you kept him home to go have fun??? That made me so mad
     
  26. GD2BQN

    GD2BQN Comrade

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    Heck!

    Our district even went to a 1/2 day schedule just to accommodate the participants in the parade. The hard part of this was that the parade began at our school and so we had to hang on to the participants from our school. Totally not fair! Sigh.....

    Next year we're not even going to a 1/2 day--it'll be a staff development day!! Score!!

    We Live-We Learn!!!
     
  27. Ms.Jasztal

    Ms.Jasztal Maven

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    Hey, if the Rays would've won, we would have had the same issue... but I'd understand because kids would be so very excited for that and likely wouldn't have many opportunities like those again.
     
  28. Historyteaching

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    I don't see why they would schedule tests on Halloween Party Day for elementary anyway..you can't get anything out of them. My hs'ers seemed hyper. I don't see anything wrong with letting students miss for special occasions. What irks me is a student I have that either misses 3-4 days a week the entire day or just my class which is the last period of the day. We have a large group that misses for hunting season or clubs that go places. Its a part of high school and let them enjoy it-most know they will have alot to make up when they return.
     
  29. MissFroggy

    MissFroggy Aficionado

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    I think the kids will remember the parade a lot longer than they will the spelling words on their test!

    It only happens once in a life time apparently, if you are a phillies fan. Aside from which, nothing much gets accomplished on Halloween.

    I had kids miss school to see early screenings of Harry Potter, to go trick or treating at their parents work and all sorts of silly reasons (bowling?) I think the parents are making these judgement calls... and no they don't always coincide with what we think is important.

    But the children are in school 90% of their lives and by the time they are adults they will have blocked out MOST of those memories. If the parents only do this RARELY, I think it's ok. What annoys me is the parents who take several trips during the year, and their child misses weeks and weeks. I think that should have some serious consequences. A child in another class just went to Hawaii for 3 weeks. I asked the teacher if they have "family" there and she said, no they have a timeshare. That's ridiculous to me.
     
  30. titansrst

    titansrst Rookie

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    This is an interesting because parents today find any excuse to have a child miss a day. I've had kids miss a day because it was raining. One missed school twice one year because her mom had appointments with the hairdresser and the nail artist. I particularly can't stand the month-long sojourns taken in December by some Dominican families to return to their island. The kids miss at least 20 days of school but somehow seem to get around the rule in my district mandating retention for 21 missed days of school. Let some native born kid try that with a visit to Disneyworld. I think most of the postings suggest reasonable patience in this regard, and they're right. But too many people abuse the privilege.
     
  31. JadeCrane

    JadeCrane Comrade

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    Thanks so much for answering, all of you - I guess I am just annoyed with all the hype here - it was on all the time, on every channel... couldn't get away from it... I couldn't possibly care less. But - it is a parent's discretion within reason of course. You are all right. Thanks...

    OH - and the teacher was out because it was her child's first school halloween parade/party... she booked me weeks prior. Thanks again for a healthy serving of perspective.
     

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