Holiday breaks

The kids have 2 more days of school left.  Yes, you heard me.  Two more days.  They are in school right up until the 23rd.  The same was true last year and the year before.  They got out on the 22nd one year because it fell on a Friday.  They return on Jan. 4th.  They’ve been known to return on the 2nd–the 2nd, people!  My memory of winter break before college are fuzzy, but I seem to recall having two full weeks off.  Usually, the extra time came at the front end of the holidays, with us getting out around the 18th of December and returning just after the new year.  My mother recalls similar schedules.  Our kids get a mere week and a half.  It seems silly for them to be going to school this short week.  Would it have been so bad for them to have had their last day on Friday.  It would give them more time to kick back and relax, to travel to visit family, etc.  Given that we had over 20 inches of snow over the weekend, it seems even more silly that they were in school this week.  What are your kids’ breaks like?  Do they get more or less time? How long would you like for winter breaks to be?

7 Replies to “Holiday breaks”

  1. My nieces, in publish school in my home state, are on the same schedule as your kids. Quite frankly, as a teacher I look at that schedule and immediately anticipate major absences this short week, because anyone who’s traveling for Christmas is going to want to leave earlier than Christmas Eve, and not a whole lot of instruction goes on when one must anticipate so many absences. At that point, I’d show a movie in class or something.

    At my independent school, glory be, we do get two full weeks of break — hallelujah! Actually, the students get a little bit longer; their last day was the 17th and their first day back is the 5th, but I’m sure in part that’s because we have international students who go back home for the break.

  2. Yeah, my parents would have made their travel plans without regard to that schedule and pulled me out of school if necessary.

  3. On the flip side, all I can say is thank goodness! My own work teaching and grading college just ended, and I *need* these three days with both kids (6 and 3) in elementary and pre-school so that I can do the gift shopping, cookie baking, card writing, decorating, wrapping, etc!

  4. Our girls’ last day of school was Friday so they have two full weeks off. Even though we’re not travelling anywhere, it’s nice (though I would like more time on my own to tackle the grading work without interruption or to feel like less of a monster when I vacuum the house from top to bottom).

    But it’s hard if your own work doesn’t give you this flexible scheduling. If you have two weeks of vacation the entire year or even three, how will you manage? Especially with kids too young or needy to be left home alone?

  5. Good point, Janice. When I was a staff person, we had the week between Christmas and New Year’s off without having to use up our time. And because we had use it or lose it vacation time, many people had days they needed to use before the end of the year. There were many years where I basically had most of the month of December off. We had a generous amount of vacation time, though, so that after just a year of working there, many people had 3-4 weeks of just vacation time. And because I ran a summer program, I didn’t take a lot of time in the summer. But I know many places just don’t give that kind of time. Daycare centers are usually open until the 23rd, of course, and barring that, for school aged kids, I’d guess that one would have to hire sitters. At least the high schoolers would be available! 🙂

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