Remember Mr. T@!*#?
He was that teacher many of us had who everyone hated. If he didn't destroy your love of learning, he sure did his best to do so. Everyone disliked Mr. T!*X# because he just didn't have a clue about how to effectively discipline his students. When a few misbehaved, he punished the whole class. If one didn't do their work, all of us paid the price. The teaching profession has worked tirelessly to rid itself of this type of discipline.
Unfortunately, the Payson Governing Board thinks these methods are a good idea --not only for the students, but also for the staff for their misbehavior with respect to the school calendar.
The board's justification for not continuing with the two week breaks supported by over 75 percent of PUSD staff contains the assertion that, "Staff absenteeism has become a serious concern." An effective teacher would deal with the truancy of individual students. Like Mr. T!*X#, the board's method is to keep everyone in for recess -- fall and spring.
Not only that, according to the board, the schools didn't provide enough intersessions. Didn't you just hate it when Mr. T!*X# kept the whole class in because Johnny didn't do his homework? Why couldn't he just make Johnny do his work or give him the extra help he needed to get it done instead of punishing all of us?
One thing many of us learned early in our schooling is the need for advance planning, whether it is for a major report, a college application, or an employment application. Many successful students have made use of the preparation time available to them to make sure everything was properly completed.
Mr. T!*X# has a better idea -- take away extra time that students might have put to good use. Likewise, the board has taken away valuable blocks of time students could use to prepare to take the SAT or write college applications independent of the added pressure of having to do it while meeting their regular school obligations. Maybe the buildings could be maintained during these breaks, too.
The staff of PUSD is here because they are dedicated to their profession and the children they strive to educate. Hopefully, Mr. T!*X#'s Governing Board will realize its error before they undermine our love of teaching.
Fifth Grade Teacher
Julia Randall Elementary School
Superintendent's Advisory Committee Representative