The Sticky Files - Marisca Bakker

Early school dismissals are a pain for parents

Marisca laments students getting out early on Thursdays disrupting her routine

Now that school is out, there are some things I will miss. I love summer, but I’ll miss the routine of school.

And my daughters had amazing teachers this year, I’ll miss interacting with them.

And they will miss their teachers. Overall, it was an excellent school year for us all.

There is one thing I will not miss, howevet, early dismissal on Thursdays. I’ve lost count the number of times, I panicked right before 2 p.m. and almost forgot. There were also so many times that I had to wake up my napping baby in order to pick up my daughter from school.

And there may have been one or two phone calls from her teacher asking me where I was at 2:15 p.m.

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Last week, I posted a photo of my sleeping baby along with the caption about hating to wake her up for early dismissal. I’ve never gotten so many responses to a photo before. (I’ve also never felt so popular before.)

Apparently, I am not alone, all of my parent friends hate early dismissal. One friend says it is so tricky to find child care or someone to grab their child while working full time.

While the school is closed only one hour earlier, it is such a wrench in the routine. A lot of my mama friends also lamented about waking up napping babies. One of my teacher friends, who works in a different district said early dismissal would never fly at her school, she said parents would revolt.

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Why does our school district, and the independent schools within the district, have early dismissal?

According to the superintendent for SD 54, Mike McDiarmid, teacher collaboration time and professional development are the main intents for this time. He also said he believes there are many other districts in the province that have time like this in their schedules, with many of them having a delayed start for students at the beginning of the school day.

Early Thursdays have been a part of the schedule in this District for more than twenty years. He added the District does have the ability to change the schedule, “but I think there have been very few complaints about the Thursdays in the last 11 years that I have been here, so I think most parents have worked around the schedule. I know the time remains very popular/appreciated by our teaching staff and they would not be very happy if it was changed.”

Independent schools follow along with the SD 54 schedule because they used to share a transit system. They no longer do but now, according a source, teachers are used to it and enjoy it now and there are no plans to get rid of it.

Maybe I’m being dramatic but early dismissals on Thursday are annoying and should be a thing of the past.


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