JESSICA’S JOURNAL: Consider kids in decisions

In the last couple weeks, there’s been some discussion about the Clarkston Community School district possibly starting the week before Labor Day, which is earlier than usual.
The Board of Education and the school district have yet to decide whether they will start before Labor Day or not, though many community members have already voiced their opinions on the matter.
I’m not sure I have a set opinion on the topic, I don’t have any children, but I did graduate high school less than five years ago, so I still remember the K-12 school system well.
Possible planned vacations aside, starting before or after Labor Day probably wouldn’t affect that much. I know as a K-12 student I couldn’t wait to get back to school after the summer.
I even felt this way as an elementary student, when I attended a year-around elementary school that got out around the third week of June and started back up Aug 1. Going to school like this from the ages of 4 to 11 made it seem a bit impractical when people claimed 10 weeks of summer vacation instead of 11 would make a huge difference.
Time spent with children is also important, but, unless you’re a teacher, most parents work during a kid’s summer vacation, I know mine and everyone’s parents I knew did. But say you work for one of the large car companies or their suppliers, a common job in metro-Detroit, time-off lines up well with the school’s winter vacation.
Having graduated less than a year ago, and taken several summer classes, I can personally relate to students who would rather be doing something outside of a classroom in June. Also, as an education major for two years in college, I’ve spent the last two weeks of a school year helping in middle school classrooms and students do tend to “check-out” when the weather gets nice.
I think parents should consider the opinions of their children and viewpoint of school administrators and staff before jumping to conclusions.
In my short time covering the schools, I truly believe every decision made in the Clarkston district is to benefit the children and the community should be thankful for that.

— Jessica Steeley

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