Wednesday, October 03, 2012

It's True: Teachers Work Short Hours


"We only work 8 to 3 ..." ~~ Fran Trouskie, GCSD counselor*
 



 * Counselors are covered under the exact same contract as all Greece teachers
  

21 comments:

Anonymous said...

Are Greece's teachers required to stay after school a certain number of days per week to work with kids that want extra help? Our present district does this 3 days a week and it has been a tremendous help for our son. It also provides them a chance to work on homework while the concepts being taught that day are still fresh in their mind, rather than at 8:00 at night (after sports, dinner, ect.).

Anonymous said...

Scats,

I think the complete quote was more telling.
The fact that the district and teachers/counselors recognize that parent invlovement is important in student success. The fact that they are actively seeking ways to increase parent involvement. The fact that they realize the "typical" school day hours may not work for working parents.
I think this news story is great.
I think the district should be commended for their effort find ways to increase parental involvement.

SCATS said...

To 7:32AM ~~ As you are likely aware, if it isn't in the teacher's contract, it can't be required. Greece teachers have a contract that expired in 2006. I'll give you the link, but I'm not aware of any such "requirement."

http://web001.greece.k12.ny.us/files/570/GTA%20Union%20Book%202005.pdf

SCATS said...

To 10:25AM ~~ So basically, you are telling us it has taken over a decade to get GCSD employees to realize THEY are part of the problem since parents work different hours???

Anonymous said...

Scats,

Yes that is what I am telling you. It probably has been much longer than a decade!

I am also acknowledging that they are making a defined effort now to reach out and increase involvement.

I would think you would be happy that they are working toward improving the current situation.

They can't change the past, although many of us wish they could. They can, however, make plans to improve the future.

How about we recognize the efforts of the present instead of continously harping on the past.

SCATS said...

To 10:54AM ~~ At the rate you are willing to allow them to go, it will take us 50 years to graduate a student!

I give Trouskie kudos for finally telling us what we've known all along ... teachers work short hours. She said it. She looked & sounded very sincere, too.

By the way, I find that little film clip odd ... silly even. I'd like to know how many non-Odyssey parents were included in that poster-making workshop? What does making collage-type posters have to do with meaningful parent involvement? Most parents won't have the luxury of wasting time on artwork.

Anonymous said...

Scats,

I am willing to give credit where it is due. When someone does something that makes sense or improves on the present situation, I will acknowledge it and support strategies that move the ball forward. It is not productive to harp on the reasons why it took so long.

Is it a good idea to try and increase parental involvement? YES!

Why not focus on the positive of a situation, for once, and let it play out without condemning past inaction?

As for the "we work 8-3" comment. We all knew that. It is nothing new. We also know that teachers take work home, although probably not as much as they would like us to think.

SCATS said...

To 11:29AM ~~ GCSD has been yammering about the need for parental involvement for many, many years. So now, what do they "do?" They invite the loud "We must save Odyssey" purple-shirt group (minus their purple shirts, they are so well known, even I recognize them!) to make posters with employees in district offices and call it "parental involvement" so that some fuzzy feel good'er like yourself will give them credit!

Gee, I bet ya they ought to be inviting the parents of Longridge or English Village or Brookside to those sessions, since we already know how involved Ms. Seeley & Co can be ;)

How much work do school counselors, librarians, gym teachers, etc. "take home"??

Anonymous said...

What they "did" was identify an area where the district can improve.
What they "did" was take the first step in rectifying the problem.
What they "did" was begin a process that they hope can improve the learning environment for the whole district.

I was under the impression that you we in favor of ideas, changes, strategies that can influence positive change in the district.

We all know that OA and PB parents are already involved, so clearly this campaign is not aimed at them. Instead it is aimed at reaching out to families who may not be as invloved.

This would seem to line up with your mantra of "how does it benefit the district as a whole."

Of course I am sure you have some snippy retort and find something else to criticize.

For goodness sakes, is there anything the district can do that would warrant any sort of positive response from you?

SCATS said...

To 12:26PM ~~ I think they identified lack of parental involvement as a problem more than a decade ago. Our BOE's have been blaming parents for at least that long ;)

What they "did to rectify the problem" was use parents who are already overly involved (the helicopter parent group from the old Odyssey) to participate in some feel-good fluff piece for the media to bask in. Notice, this was a 1 station story? You say clearly this campaign wasn't aimed at OA or PB parents, yet they are the stars of the video from the parent group LOL

I already gave Trouskie kudos for stating the truth after all of these years. That was positive :)

Anonymous said...

To those saying they identified the "problem" what specifically are they doing to create change...posters are not the answer. Show me where they have a detailed plan that shows a hypothesis...if we do X the Y may happen. IDENTIFY What is the test/experiment ... "we are requiring teachers to stay after 3 times a week to see if parental involvement increases" They have not identified WHAT they are doing to reach parents that are not already involved. I saw quite a few PTA parents and others that support music and sports in the clip...remember the issue is HOW to get those that ARE NOT ACTIVE to participate. This is more BS feel good "strategies" with no clearly defined cause and effect action plans.

SCATS said...

To 1:25PM ~~ THANK YOU for stating the issue it very well :) Maybe they will "get it" now ;)

Anonymous said...

They had an initial meeting to kick off a "5 year strategic plan".
Cleary the are using a roadmap created by a foup called Family Friendly Schools (www.familyfriendlyschools.com).

Perhaps you should give them some time to decide how to move forward. But clearly you have no interest in helping to make thing better. Your interest seems to be solely based in complaining about anything and everything the district does.

SCATS said...

To 1:54PM ~~ Perhaps they should NOT make their "kick-off" a publicity-seeking event then ;)As 1:25PM stated, show us "the plan" & tell us what they are DOING to get uninvolved parents engaged.

When O'Rourke was here, he used to say you need to ask what it is you need to accomplish, how to go about it and how to realize if/whenyou succeeded. So far, there's been not one word to show any such "plan." Business as usual.

Anonymous said...

Here is an idea from the 1990's and before that worked then and we could easily return to.

Years ago Greece used to have a very active couple of conference days. Just like the other grade levels do now.

Senior High conferences were set up with all of the teachers in the gym and commons areas. Conferences were at a variety of times including late afternoon and evening so they were easy to attend and no appointment was necessary. Scores of parents came to school for these conferences. The teachers were accessible and parents would often conference with teachers that hadn't intended to, just because it was so convenient.

This changed when Dr. Walts was here. Under Walts the process was changed so parents had to schedule individual appointments weeks in advance of the conference days. The process made it so difficult and awkward for a parent to meet a Senior High teacher, that attendance at conferences plummeted.
After a few years of dismal attendance, the senior high conferences were cancelled.

This is one example, of many, how district administration hurt our community by 'fixing' something that wasn't broken.

This would be an easy thing to bring back if our district would have that vision, or hind sight to do so. I find it most frustrating that our memory is so short that we need to bring in an 'expert' to tell us what should be common sense. That is 'That schools should be places that not only teach our children, but that help build neighborhoods and communities.'

SCATS said...

To 10:58PM ~~ Personally, I will NOT discuss my child's progress in such a public manner out of respect for my child. Other than that, your dusting off of an old idea might be a good direction to start in.

By the way, I'm not sure that Odyssey went along with either the commons area conferences, or with eliminating them for HS students.

Anonymous said...

Funny thing is, schools, even GCSD schools worked well, once, way back in the 20th Century.

Most kids learned things like reading, writing, math, science, geography & history.

Then, a lot of people bought into NewMath and "Professionals" know best.
Guess what, it didn't work in 1975 and the turd don't float today.

Seems like one hell of a lot of people should be DEMANDING to go back to when things worked. Let's begin by eliminating half of the sports programs. If it didn't exist in 1970, it doesn't NEED to exist today. The remaining sports MUST return to being a privileged for students with sufficient grades to participate.

Those "parents" who don't like the concept of learning academics being the business of GCSD can move to an area where sports are important.

The current system is a crock of crap in overpriced entertainment complexes where so called teachers fail miserably to perform the job they're paid to do.

GCSD is rapidly reaching the benchmark of graduating 75% welfare ready students at insane cost.

Anyone claiming "teachers" work either long or hard hasn't driven past a school 20 minutes after classes end. The parking lots for "teachers" tell the story.

Anonymous said...

What exactly are teacher's hours?

I once asked a teacher-neighbor why they didn't delay high school starting times a couple hours given students aren't awake before 9 am? After all, I said isn't it all about the kids and their education?

His response:
"I have a 2:30 tee time three days a week and that is not going to change"

Turns out when I thought he was GETTING HOME ABOUT THE SAME TIME I did (5:45 TO 6) he was actually finishing 18 holes!

I've voted NO to everything ever since!!

So what are teacher hours?

Anonymous said...

3:58-That's a great teacher-bashing story to tell, but you and I both know it's not true!

SCATS said...

To 3:58PM ~~ Since no one else responded to you, I will. Different schools have different start & end times. The length of time a teacher spends in front of students, or dealing with them in other ways is specified in the teacher's contract. That should be considered the minimum time, but for many it appears to be the maximum they spend.

To 10:19PM ~~ Ha!! There's nothing about that "story" to question. Plenty of teachers moonlight in second jobs or by running their own businesses. It's true it will never change either, because it would cost a fortune to get the hours changed or school days lengthened through GTA negotiations ;)

Anonymous said...

Scars, you know your response to 10:19 is crap...IT'S ALL ABOUT THE KIDS!