Missing school for family trips or other things?
Post ReplyPost New TopicPosted 11/26/2012 by Monklady123 in NSBR Board
 

Monklady123
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Posted: 11/26/2012 8:16:07 AM
I was fascinated to read all the replies in that thread about the problems with holiday visitation between divorced parents. (and to the OP from that thread -- I'm sorry that you have to go through all that. )

But, as I said, I'm interested in people's replies there are the specific issue of missing school for a vacation or other event (not illness, obviously...that can't be helped). In that other thread someone, I think maybe the OP, said:


And while I have heard over and over that this is only first grade, not Harvard, I do wonder how many students that actually attend Harvard got there by missing school unnecessarily.


I think probably -- I'm not sure, but I suspect I'm right -- that anyone who missed some days in 1st or 2nd grade is NOT going to mess up their chances to go to Harvard. Seriously.

I also hear all you teachers saying you teach every single day and that's commendable. But here's my dd's experience this year -- she's a senior at a top-rated high school. The last day of school before Thanksgiving was Tuesday. She came home that day and I asked her about her math class specifically, because they were supposed to get a test back. She said "oh we went over our test then watched "The Office." I said " and what does that have to do with math?" It's Probability and Statistics so for all I know The Office might have related somehow. Anyway, she said "oh it doesn't, but there were too many kids absent and he didn't want to teach anything new." Not that I want dd watching TV in school but on the other hand I totally see his point.

As for missing school...I think it depends on the circumstances. I am absolutely fine with it if it's something special. For instance, one year ds went with my dh to Switzerland. Dh was there on work, and ds went with him and spent his days wandering around alone while dh was working, then they did things together in the evening. Ds had a blast, he learned SO much, even picked up some French. He missed three days of school due to the way dh's work days were scheduled. His teachers were all saying "Switzerland, how exciting!" and gave him the work he would miss, or gave him an assignment that related to whatever subject they had. This was high school.

Same thing when I took dd to Paris. We got very inexpensive flights using dh's frequent flyer miles but the best prices meant she would miss four days of school. Same school, different teachers. They all said the same thing. Some of her assignments were easy to do while in France -- photography and French, for example. Others took a bit more creativity. And a few couldn't be "translated" to a trip to Paris so she just did them. She had no problems when she got back to school.

I don't know...maybe because we have such a diverse student population here, and so many kids whose parents are foreign, or whose parents work for the military or the government...maybe that gives our schools a more relaxed attitude when it's a family trip back home or a special trip somewhere.

As for elementary school....obviously everything is important. They're learning to read and do math and how to get along with people, and many other things. But to miss a few days of that, well I don't think it's a life-altering problem. If they are going to go to Harvard they will need to work hard in high school where the grades count. And yes, I know, they need a proper work ethic in order to get those good grades. But I think that work ethic is instilled in our kids over the course of their early lives, by all people who they come in contact with -- school, family, church -- and won't be negated by hearing that they can miss a couple of days of school for something important.

Okay, bring it on. I'm interested in any and all opinions on this.

Oh and for all you teachers -- I absolutely support all teachers, you are all underpaid for what I see that you do, and I have never taught my children to disrespect any teacher. Just wanted to get that out of the way.



Darkangel090260
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Posted: 11/26/2012 8:25:22 AM
My kids get one day they may miss in a school year, Besides sick days. I refuse to allow them to miss school for family trips ect.


I have quite a few learing disabilitys that effect my spelling a grammer. I do know my grammer and spelling suck. I have been working on this problem all my adult life.

dalayney
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Posted: 11/26/2012 8:27:33 AM
I love my husband's perspective. He was raised in Bellevue, Ne. which is a military town. His friends were out of school alot when their parents came home from deployment. Happened all the time. Dad/mom would get home, they would take off for a week for a mini vacation, or just to stay home and be with them. As long as their grades were good, it was good w/the school. Family comes first. period.

Plus, not everyone can take vacations in the summer. Not everyone works the typical 9-5, take 2 weeks off in the summer... blah blah blah. So what, those people are never supposed to take their kids on vacation, ever?

We're taking our kids out of school at the end of febuary to go to disneyworld for a week. (yes, the dreaded mouse! Perfect peas, run away screaming in horror!) Our 6yr old has no clue (we're thinking about surprising him at the airport) and our 13yr old has been very diligent keeping his grades up, and not missing any school. Our school has no problem with it. But if they did, they're MY kids.

BEF2008
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Posted: 11/26/2012 8:30:57 AM
My kids (high school age) have friends whose parents allow them to take "mental health" days on a regular basis. They usually happy, "coincidentally," on the days that highly anticipated video games are released. :roll eyes: (One of the mothers justifies it by saying her child has been bullied for years because he's smaller than average and therefore he deserves some time to himself. Not for nothing but the kid really struggles academically too.) I'm sorry, I can't get behind that. Even if the bullying thing were true, is that how you deal with it?? Let him stay home alone all day and play video games???


Dalai Mama
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Posted: 11/26/2012 8:34:24 AM
Like you said, it depends on the circumstances. DS took a week and a half off of school last year to tour Sweden with his choir. Choristers on the trip ranged from grade 7 to grade 12. We also pulled my younger son out at the same time so that we could visit Sweden separately. This year Dylan will miss the last week of school when the choir tours South Africa. Does it send a message to him that those trips are more important than school? Probably, but my belief is that they are more important.

I took a month off in grade 11 to tour Britain. It was in invaluable experience.

A trip to Disney World? No, he wouldn't be missing school for that.


Jo Mama

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SDeven
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Posted: 11/26/2012 8:34:55 AM
For us, life is about balance and I believe that being a healthy, well-rounded person means you must find balance.

I have one in the fourth grade. We don't put school above all else, although it is a high priority. Education takes place everywhere--not just school from 8 to 3. (See homeschooled brother.)

We have no other family in this state. To see them, we have to travel and occasionally that requires school to be missed. One person misses school but all four of us benefit.

I'm not a slackard parent. I let the teacher know ahead of time. It maybe amounts to two or three days per year. The work gets completed.

I'm the parent. I get to decide what's best for my little family, taking all things into consideration, not just one aspect. Period.

A few years back DS missed two days because DH was receiving a very important award from his company and I wanted to be there. It was the only two days he missed that whole year. It was worth it...I would do it again.






GrinningCat
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Posted: 11/26/2012 8:35:02 AM
If grades are fine, keeping up, no outstanding issues, missing school shouldn't be the big deal it's made to be here at the Peas.

I missed a lot of school for things other than sickness. I did very well. I was gone for extended amounts of time for vacation, theatre productions, and other stuff. School is not the be all and end all.

My mom (a teacher) gladly called me out when I was younger for mental health days... she knew that sometimes you just need a day away. No biggie.

I think it depends on the kid though, some can do it easily and some will struggle.

MotherofJackals
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Posted: 11/26/2012 8:39:41 AM

And while I have heard over and over that this is only first grade, not Harvard, I do wonder how many students that actually attend Harvard got there by missing school unnecessarily.


I think this is a valid argument if your child only learns inside the walls of a classroom. If all learning stops when the school bell rings every second at school is critical.


I don't think school should be blown off routinely to hang out at the mall, stay home and paint your nails or because you just don't feel like going. I think when possible kids shouldn't miss any school. At the same time I think children need to be taught to put school in perspective with the rest of life.



MerryMom937
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Posted: 11/26/2012 8:40:47 AM
Add me to the group of "My child misses school only for illness or funeral".

ahiller
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Posted: 11/26/2012 8:41:03 AM
We went to Florida to visit my grandparents every year. Some years, it fell during our winter break and some years it didn't. We went when my dad could get the vacation time, so it sometimes meant missing school. And you know what? I turned out fine. I went to a great college and even went on to get my MBA. It wasn't the end of the world.

I do remember sitting at my grandparents counter, staring out at the ocean while I did my homework though. That was a bummer!

I'd pull my kids out of school for something important to us, like travel. No so much for a new video game release, like a previous poster mentioned.

Ginger21
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Posted: 11/26/2012 8:47:45 AM
Our school district gives us 5 vacation days to use for family vacation. We just need approval ahead of time and it can't be used during certain times of the year when they have testing.


MotherofJackals
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Posted: 11/26/2012 8:47:51 AM

Not everyone works the typical 9-5, take 2 weeks off in the summer... blah blah blah. So what, those people are never supposed to take their kids on vacation, ever?


My husband worked such a job for years and I was once a staunch supporter of kids never missing school. So we didn't do any vacations for years. Our first family vacation was in 2002 (after 10years of marriage and 5 kids) our second was in 2007 and the kids did miss school for that one (3 days). You know what? Now that my oldest child has moved out and I have 2 more leaving in the next few years I deeply regret not doing more vacations. We could have afforded it not fancy stuff but we could have made it happen. That time is gone and a few extra days in the classroom made zero difference for my kids but not having more time as a family did have an impact.


Tuva42
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Posted: 11/26/2012 8:56:28 AM
We have only rarely taken the kids out of school for anything but illness or family funerals.

Except today begins 6 days of school that my DD who is a freshman in high school will miss. She got a part in a local play that is performed 12 times over the next 6 school days. Thousands of school kids take field trips to see this play at our Opera House. We knew when she auditioned that she would miss the days. She got permission from school for excused absences these days. She contacted every teacher ahead of time and worked out how the missed work will be made up. Most of her teachers gave her packets of work that she has already started on. She will make it back to school for her last class most days, and she will stay after to check in with the teachers she missed, turn in work, etc. Everyone has been very supportive and DD is being very responsible. I feel good about it because the experience she's had in this play have been ones she will never get at school. She's on track now to finish the semester with straight A's.


Laurie

dottyscrapper
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Posted: 11/26/2012 9:08:21 AM

Like you said, it depends on the circumstances. DS took a week and a half off of school last year to tour Sweden with his choir. Choristers on the trip ranged from grade 7 to grade 12. We also pulled my younger son out at the same time so that we could visit Sweden separately. This year Dylan will miss the last week of school when the choir tours South Africa. Does it send a message to him that those trips are more important than school? Probably, but my belief is that they are more important.

I took a month off in grade 11 to tour Britain. It was in invaluable experience.

A trip to Disney World? No, he wouldn't be missing school for that.


I so relate to what you are saying and agree with it 100% Dalai Mama

There's far more to " education" than just sitting in a classroom learning math and spelling !

I'm sure you're children will grow up with more understanding of other cultures other than their own,an understanding of lifestyles and a far more rounded knowledge in preparation for the outside world when they eventually get to the workforce.

Disney world - as you said no I don't think that is.



It depends on the circumstances I think, each absence must be balanced as to how beneficial it would be against what they would miss at school.This would include a family vacation when it would not be possible for the parents to have time off during the school break. Family time together on an annual vacation is equally important IMO.

You could argue the same point for sickness. Would it really be necessary for a child to take a day off school for a sniffle of a cold. Some children will put up and carry on with feeling a little unwell whilst others will be half dying with the same symptoms LOL.



KikiPEA
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Posted: 11/26/2012 9:12:40 AM

Family comes first. period.


That. This includes school AND work.




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Posted: 11/26/2012 9:15:31 AM
Well, we homeschool so my opinion might not be welcomed BUT I think if you are reasonable in missing school, meaning you don't take five vacations over school then take them out!!! Reality is they are still learning outside of the classroom and honestly they are probably learning valuable life skills an d experiencing so much more than sitting at a desk or playing with 18 other 4th graders. Yes school has its place and learning is a priority, but think outside of the 'box' and open the mind to other ways of learning life. The world will not end taking a vacation, visiting with your father, attending a wedding or even taking in a special community event. Life is simply to short.... Enjoy it, I promise you will not break your child's work ethic or educational career - in fact they might just learn a healthy balance in work and living.


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