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Old 08-12-2011, 08:48 AM
 
Location: southwest TN
8,063 posts, read 13,654,427 times
Reputation: 14355

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Momma_bear View Post
What will happen if you have unexcused absences? I personally would not take my kids out of school for six days to go to Disney. I might take them out for that long if we were doing something like traveling to a foreign country where they would learn something. To me, Disney is not educational and while it is fun they had all summer to have fun.


I think you should make whatever choice you think is right for your family. I would not let the school district dictate to you what you can and cannot do. However, if it was me I would not take my kids out for that long for Disney. I would do it for another more educational trip but not Disney. Why wouldn't you be able to visit Disney at some other time that does not interfere with school?
She said why - this is a one-time opportunity and they cannot afford it on their own.

I WOULD take my kids out of school for this - and I'm not a big believer in time out of school if possible to avoid. However, Disney is absolutely educational, and even more specifically if they head to Epcot or quick trip over to Cape Kennedy. Boy, was that a wonderful side trip for us one year!

So why is Disney educational? Aside from the "forced" educational aspects of budgeting, etc., look at the possibilities: Seeing the artistry (not any less artistic in its own right from going to a museum), the historical backgrounds of many exhibits - my kids were thrilled seeing Lincoln "giving his speech" or hearing the voices of other presidents; look at the incredible special effects and seeing the possibilities out there. Imagine if just one kid out of a thousand saw something at Disney and said, "I want to do that" how motivating it could be heading into high school years - the interest in the science behind nanotechnology or so many hundreds of other interests - different cultures (sociology) or the issues with deforestation. No, I'm not creating nothing out of fantasy - the fantasy is what leads to new technology and art and music and the technology of music and.......... oh my, my mind is running at warp speed - and yes, that's something else to grab a kid's attention and give him/her motivation. The possibilities are infinitessimal! Endless! Mind-blowing!

BTW, if you have a chance, on I-Drive is a children's science center - can't remember the name of it - it's an upside down house. It's more geared towards younger children, but my husband and I had a blast! Not only from watching our gkids but on our own and it's a perfect way to spend a (possibly) rainy day.

OP, have a blast and do NOT feel guilty. Experience is a fantastic teacher.
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Old 08-12-2011, 08:52 AM
 
1,173 posts, read 3,836,303 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NJGOAT View Post
I'd have to say I would throw a fit if the school would actually penalize my children for me taking them out of school for something like this. I could understand them being miffed if it was an every year thing or we made a habit of extended absences, etc. The OP is discussing a one time thing, that also appears to be a one time opportunity that they may not have again for a long time.

The school doesn't have to like it, but they shouldn't penalize the kids for it. If this were my kids and the school refused to provide the covered material and was not going to offer a makeup opportunity for any missed tests/quizzes I would raise holy hell over it. For nothing more than the simple fact that I was honest and could have just as easily lied to them about why we were going or even gotten a doctors note excusing the absences.
I agree with you I'd be annoyed with the school too if they didn't provide the materials or gave my kid zeros for missed tests but it may or may not be the policy at the OP's school and while "raising holy hell" might work if they were missing school because they were at your dying grandmother's bedside if it was to go to Disney you're probably just going to start a war with the principal that the school board won't back you on.

I really think this boils down to two things first, at least minimal cooperation from the school and second and most importantly her own children's performance in school. If her kids have a hard time with their school work or do not understand topics easily she should could be doing them a big disservice. On the flip side if her kids are very intelligent and are in advanced/honors classes they could miss A LOT of material in 6 days since the classes or high paced. But if her children are of average intelligence, perform fairly well and don't need to put tremendous effort forward just to get a passing grade they should be fine and I agree a Disney vacation will stick with them much longer than the second week of school will!
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Old 08-12-2011, 08:59 AM
 
Location: Geneva, IL
12,974 posts, read 11,366,011 times
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I have taken my kids out of school for a long period to travel overseas. Each school district handles an extended absence differently. We had to de-register and then re-register the kids (which was not a big deal at all) to avoid the chain of notifications that the school is obliged to comply with. Our school neither encourages nor discourages long absences, but they were more than willing to work with us to make it happen. I think honesty is the best policy for something like this, especially as if it were my kids they would tell everyone where they had been on their return .
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Old 08-12-2011, 09:08 AM
 
83 posts, read 85,883 times
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We have taken our kids out of school almost every year to go to Disney. We only go during the off season. Our school district considers family vacations an excused absence, however. (Last year, I took them all out of school one day to go to a museum, too.) My kids are all great students and don't miss many days otherwise. This year may be different because my oldest is now in 7th grade and it gets harder as they get older. But I think family vacations are important. So I say do it - although I sometimes have my husband go in and fill out the paperwork because Im a wimp about dealing with the looks (most of the teachers are very nice, btw). Last year was the first time a principal tried to give me a guilt trip and wrote she had "reservations" about letting my kindergartener out of school because he had missed like 5 days throughout the year. I was like, whatever - he's in KINDERGARTEN.

I do try to avoid weeks of standardized testing, though, just because that can really mess up the schedule when they get back.
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Old 08-12-2011, 09:11 AM
 
Location: here
23,993 posts, read 27,479,909 times
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^ every year is kind of excessive IMO. My parents never took me out of school one single time growing up. It creates extra work for whoever has to get the work together to send home, and the school doesn't get the money for your kids when they aren't there. I think the OP's once in a childhood type Disney trip is ok, but not every year. I'd probably give you a "look" too.
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Old 08-12-2011, 09:15 AM
 
Location: here
23,993 posts, read 27,479,909 times
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A personal story - My SIL open enrolled her kids in a school other than her neighborhood school. One school year there were 2 week-long trips that both involved the grandparents, and were both once in a childhood type trips. At the end of the year, the school told my SIL that her kids couldn't open enroll for the next year because they'd had too many unexcused absences. A caution, find out your district or states rules and consequences.
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Old 08-12-2011, 09:17 AM
 
14,756 posts, read 33,237,252 times
Reputation: 14181
Quote:
Originally Posted by icibiu View Post
I agree with you I'd be annoyed with the school too if they didn't provide the materials or gave my kid zeros for missed tests but it may or may not be the policy at the OP's school and while "raising holy hell" might work if they were missing school because they were at your dying grandmother's bedside if it was to go to Disney you're probably just going to start a war with the principal that the school board won't back you on.

I really think this boils down to two things first, at least minimal cooperation from the school and second and most importantly her own children's performance in school. If her kids have a hard time with their school work or do not understand topics easily she should could be doing them a big disservice. On the flip side if her kids are very intelligent and are in advanced/honors classes they could miss A LOT of material in 6 days since the classes or high paced. But if her children are of average intelligence, perform fairly well and don't need to put tremendous effort forward just to get a passing grade they should be fine and I agree a Disney vacation will stick with them much longer than the second week of school will!
I just feel that there should be no resistance from the school unless they have an extremely compelling reason for it. Hence, why I would raise "holy hell" if they chose to deny my request or fight me on it. Call it a healthy dose of contempt for academia, but my decision as a parent as to what's best for my child should be respected and accomodated.

While I think you have merit on the academic side with the kids, I don't think they will miss anything in the second week that will cause them to fall seriously behind in their studies. In fact, the only way they would fall seriously behind is if the school chose not to accomodate the request and penalized the kids for the absence.

Essentially the school has two choices if I as a parent decide to do this. Work with me in the best interests of the kids, or punish the kids for my decision. It's a very weak position for them to want to punish my children for a decision that I made.
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Old 08-12-2011, 09:21 AM
 
14,756 posts, read 33,237,252 times
Reputation: 14181
Quote:
and the school doesn't get the money for your kids when they aren't there.
Not sure how it works where you live, but in my area, my tax dollars pay for the school. They're getting paid by me whether I have kids or not or they show up or not.
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Old 08-12-2011, 09:24 AM
 
Location: NW Montana
6,258 posts, read 12,310,256 times
Reputation: 3414
I am going to have to go with this from a different view.
What are you really teaching your children?
It is ok to lie.
It is ok to toss your obligations because something more exciting has come up.
Have you considered the teacher's view? Your teacher (s) will have to make sure your children are up to speed upon their return. If your children are elementary then much of that will be establishing routine in their day. Have you considered this yourself? A child ready for school begins to get that daily routine going weeks before the first day of school.

You may consider my opinion to be not going with the flow but my kids are all up and out of college with jobs.
And they never went to any Disney lands of any kind. Your decision is up to you, just know they are watching you and will base their life upon what you do.
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Old 08-12-2011, 09:24 AM
 
Location: here
23,993 posts, read 27,479,909 times
Reputation: 29427
Quote:
Originally Posted by NJGOAT View Post
Not sure how it works where you live, but in my area, my tax dollars pay for the school. They're getting paid by me whether I have kids or not or they show up or not.
I don't know how it is here, but growing up, with 2 teacher parents (in a different state than I'm in now), the amount of tax money the school got was based on daily attendance. That's what I was told, at least. If that is true, it would make sense that the school my niece and nephew were in wouldn't "want" them anymore if they missed too many days.
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