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SAVE OUR SUMMERS!!!!!!!! PLEASANTON

Original post made by Ruthann, West of Foothill, on Apr 9, 2014

The Pleasanton Unified School District is about to decide the fate of our school schedules. They will make their decision, NEXT MONTH- May 2014. VOICE YOUR OPINION NOW...
instcal@pleasantonusd.net
Keep in mind, this is not Year round school, but they refuse to say they will not "modify" the schedule again within 2 years. So...we may be headed towards Year Round School, to avoid building new schools for the new thousands of housing units being added to our city.
I am posting this only so you can be aware, not to start a neighborhood war, or to see who loves their kids more. We all love our kids & hopefully we are honestly wanting & doing what is best for them.
Please send your opinion to the email: instcal@pleasantonusd.net
To read more about the changes:
Web Link

Comments (21)

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Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Middle School
on Apr 10, 2014 at 6:01 pm

We came from a city that had year-round schools and we eventually figured it out. The part we liked was having time off when most other schools were in session. It made travel so much more pleasant (no crowds at the usual places).

Our kids said they liked the year-round because they had a break at summer but it was not so long that they got bored (or us up in arms keeping them from being bored.)

The difficult part about year-round was the teachers. They moaned and complained constantly about it. Some said they were impacted financially because on a traditional schedule they could get a summer job. The ones that bugged us the most were those that said they could no longer spend 8 weeks in Europe or South America like they were "used to doing".


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Posted by Pleasanton Parent
a resident of Pleasanton Middle School
on Apr 10, 2014 at 6:02 pm

We came from a city that had year-round schools and we eventually figured it out. The part we liked was having time off when most other schools were in session. It made travel so much more pleasant (no crowds at the usual places).

Our kids said they liked the year-round because they had a break at summer but it was not so long that they got bored (or us up in arms keeping them from being bored.)

The difficult part about year-round was the teachers. They moaned and complained constantly about it. Some said they were impacted financially because on a traditional schedule they could get a summer job. The ones that bugged us the most were those that said they could no longer spend 8 weeks in Europe or South America like they were "used to doing".


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Posted by Cholo
a resident of Livermore
on Apr 10, 2014 at 6:25 pm

Who would want to spend their summers with your children if they can travel and enjoy the world?

i rest my case...


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Posted by Get the facts
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 10, 2014 at 6:33 pm

Ruthann, did you go to any of the informational meetings? There is no chance that school will go longer, it will stay the same amount of instructional days, 180. Web Link No one is interested in year-round schooling.


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Posted by Yes to modified schedule
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 10, 2014 at 10:16 pm

This is not year round school. It is just a slightly shorter summer with some other random weeks off during the year to make up for it. I hope it happens and I encourage people to write the school board in support.


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Posted by Ruthann
a resident of West of Foothill
on Apr 13, 2014 at 11:03 am

Thank you for all of your civil comments, I am impressed. My blood pressure thanks you too :)
Just a quick 'civil' reply... To "get the facts" & "yes modify" - Yes..I did attend a meeting. If you look up Year round school, it too has 180 instructional days.
My fear that we are headed towards year round school is 2-fold..one- mainly due to research...that 'many' districts that start "modifying" the school calendar, eventually end up with year round school. My other reason for that concern is...at the meeting I attended, the "calendar commission" said they COULD NOT GUARENTEE they would not "modify" the calendar again within 2 years.
But.. I REALLY hope you are right..I really hope we are not headed that way.

Again...thanks for all the civil comments. I will not be checking back, since I fear that Cholo might want to raise my blood pressure.
Just kidding Cholo! :)


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Posted by Kathleen Ruegsegger
a resident of Vintage Hills Elementary School
on Apr 13, 2014 at 11:33 am

Kathleen Ruegsegger is a registered user.

First, having experienced year round schools with one of our children, I would not recommend or support it.

As to modified calendars eventually becoming year round, I have not seen that happen (and would appreciate a link to data that indicates it is the case). Palo Alto is in its second year of a modified calendar and has adopted similar calendars for the next three years. The change across The Bay was to push for finals prior to winter break and no homework during the break. While seniors expressed some concerns about applying to colleges and doing finals as being hectic, the majority of students were supportive of the change. There are numerous board reports on their web site and plenty of information posted here: Web Link Has anyone else mentioned calendars are a negotiable part of teacher union contracts?


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Posted by Keri
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 13, 2014 at 1:03 pm

Yes, I would also like to see evidence of modified later turning into year round. The district we were at in San Diego went straight to year round, there was never modified. Palo Alto district is certainly not one to laugh at, that is a really good school district.


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Posted by Save MY summers!!
a resident of Downtown
on Apr 13, 2014 at 7:24 pm

I vote for school 365 days of every year. When the kids are in school they are not out getting into trouble. I would like nothing more than to be able to enjoy my own home, go to the park, just walk around town and not be overwhelmed by swarms of bored kids who are out of school.
So, yes, save our summers by keeping the kids off the streets and out of trouble. Of course if parents would teach their kids to be responsible people, who valued other people's rights, none of us would have these complaints.


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Posted by Homeowner G
a resident of Foothill Knolls
on Apr 13, 2014 at 8:20 pm

I'm gonna send my kids over to Save MY summers!!' lawn, sounds like it could use some company.


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Posted by school parent
a resident of Bridle Creek
on Apr 14, 2014 at 11:41 am

Let's get the fact straight, this is NOT year-round school, but a modified schedule with a couple of extra weeks off between quarters. This totally makes sense as the quarter ends before the winter break - much easier on the students. My neighbors and I are in full support of this idea. Also, summer break will still be about 6-7 weeks - plenty of time for teachers to travel the world!


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Posted by Fair is Fair
a resident of Mission Park
on Apr 14, 2014 at 12:16 pm

I'm down with the modified schedule, for all the reasons proponents have said above. The only negative I could say is with a shorter summer, our kids may have a harder time getting summer jobs/internships (just a theory) or at least make less summer job money.


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Posted by Bill
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Apr 14, 2014 at 12:34 pm

Too bad. I'd be all for year round school. After month one of summer vacation, the kids just turn into zombies.


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Posted by ILovePleasanton
a resident of Birdland
on Apr 14, 2014 at 12:51 pm

I love having my kids with me for summer break - we have great adventures and it affords us some great bonding time. If we have a week here or there off extra, that just isn't enough time to "wind down" and enjoy each other because we have to "ramp back up" again in a few days. The time we have with our kids at home is so precious, temporary and goes by far too quickly. I want to have as much quality time with my kids as I can and I don't think I can do that with more sporadic weeks off. I love having a nice chunk of time to enjoy my kids.


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Posted by Your Harvest Park Neighbor
a resident of Birdland
on Apr 14, 2014 at 7:27 pm

I support the Modified calendar.

1) Kids get a break from the stress of homework, projects, tests, etc. Teachers get a break, too. Both parties come back renewed and regenerated! I think this leads to everyone being more productive.
2) Air fare is much cheaper (sometimes 40% cheaper) during the off months such as October and March. For instance, in our case, transplanted families are able to visit grandparents in the East Coast for 4-5 days without breaking the bank for a family of five.
3) Summer will not be cancelled. It is just shorter by 1-2 weeks.
4) The number of instructional days remain the same.
5) Finals for the high schoolers are done before the holidays.

PUSD, let's go for the Modified or Modified Hybrid Calendar!


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Posted by Early start/early finish
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 14, 2014 at 8:18 pm

Clearly, the comments above are from parents who don't have high schoolers. As a parent of older students I fully support early start/early finish which offers an adjusted schedule but still a 9 or 10 week summer. These two schedules offer all the benefits of getting finals/semester completed before Christmas break and and all of the teaching done before AP tests. The other two modified schedules offer a lot of wasted time. 2 weeks in October, 1 week in November, 2 weeks in December, 2 weeks in April - in addition to the myriad of days off that are currently offered means there would not be continuity in teaching. There would constantly be starts and stops. Also, the sports schedules won't stop because of this . Kids in sports will not get breaks. This means they may only get a shortened summer break off without the benefit of the breaks during the summer. Except for Christmas break there will be homework/projects assigned. Anyone who thinks the homework policy holds any water is all wet!

So although we would all like to have a less expensive trip anywhere (although the presenters all discussed Disneyland extensively) I believe a more continuous schedule for the students would be best.


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Posted by Ruthann
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 15, 2014 at 1:37 pm

Ruthann is a registered user.

I love the civil comments! WOW! I'm so impressed!
Dear "IlovePleasanton"... you & I must be long, lost sisters. I feel exactly the same as you... you are not alone. Time flies by...we all know it, so soaking up as much time as possible with my kids is my goal. Before long they will move out & spread their wings.
"Early Start"... I agree with you, SUMMER IS THE ONLY TRUE BREAK FOR KIDS. Once kids are in middle school, and even sometimes in elementary school...they start receiving projects & homework during breaks. My kids even got some during Christmas break. SUMMER IS THE ONLY TRUE BREAK FOR KIDS.-thanks for your post.
Summer is already 3 weeks shorter than it was... 30 years ago in the bay area, so at minimum...if summer is shortened even 2 weeks...that makes it 5 weeks shorter than what many of us were able to enjoy as kids.
Rush, rush rush...is what this generation of parents are doing to their kids. Let kids, be kids.


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Posted by Restructuring
a resident of Bordeaux Estates
on Apr 15, 2014 at 8:51 pm

I am a parent in favor of restructuring the calendar. I would like to see more short breaks. True breaks with no projects or homework, during the school year. My kids get very tired of the constant go go go pace of school. My high schooler would be much better off with a semester break at Christmas and shifting the start back would better align with the AP testing schedule giving the teachers more time to teach the AP curriculum instead of the kids having to teach themselves all summer. I know it would be a hard switch at first but I think the benefits far outweigh the drawbacks.


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Posted by NO to modified schedule
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 16, 2014 at 8:55 pm

I am 100% against any changes to the school calendar. Our children only have a short time to be kids. When I reflect back on my childhood, the memories that are the fondest were the lazy summer afternoons riding bikes, going to museums, spending time with my loved ones and friends and using my imagination to create something to do. I have long forgotten the complex math equations and the speeches I had to memorize.
We live in one of the most amazing communities in the world. We have terrific weather that allows us the opportunity to spend endless hours outside. We have many local museums, parks, sports facilities, libraries, amusement parks, beaches, lakes and so much more. Bored kids, come from lazy parents or children who must feel entitled to be entertained. Living where we live and with how much kids these days have, no one should ever feel bored. What is it with our culture that wants to rob kids of the opportunity to be kids? Why do we constantly insist on pressuring our children relentlessly as demonstrated in the film "Race to Nowhere"?


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Posted by Get the facts
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Apr 16, 2014 at 10:09 pm

The schedule changes that are most likely to be implemented would change the summer from ten weeks to eight or nine weeks. Still a plenty long summer. Plenty of time for riding bikes and going to museums.

Also, the school year will stay the same, 180 days. My family and I just had a great vacation during Spring Break. All that fun stuff can happen whenever you make it happen, not just during the summer. In fact, a break in October can get you great airline fares and great weather at the vacation spot of your dreams, another week to spend time with your family.


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Posted by Wilma
a resident of Ironwood
on Apr 18, 2014 at 9:26 am

We support the Modified Schedule with shorter breaks throughout the calendar. Having too long of a break requires valueable time and resources to provide refreshers when returning from a traditional Summer break. We are concerned our kids will fall behind academically in the global market place. Bonding time and family vacations over a five week Summer break, just like standard European vacations is sufficient. For those homes where the parent(s) must work and dont have the ability to stay at home, the shorter breaks are important as well for structure and schedule.


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