Ditching School for Vacation
As February break came to an end this school year, many students took advantage of the impending school week to lengthen their vacation. Some students were unable to find travel plans that fit around the allotted vacation time. As a result students missed up to five days of school and received extensive amounts of makeup work.
Many students left the United States for their vacation. Duxbury High School Freshman Elizabeth W. said, “I went to Mexico for vacation. We went from Thursday the thirteenth to Wednesday the nineteenth. I missed five days of school.” Freshman Chatham E. said, “We went to Puerto Rico over February break. We were there for eight days, I missed one day of school.”
Other students stayed in the States for the one week break. Junior Tayler K. said, “I went to New Hampshire for break to go skiing, I only missed two days.” Junior Mary Kate W. did not miss any school due to travel plans, but used her vacation for educational purposes. The rising senior went down to North Carolina and Virginia to visit colleges that she is possibly interested in. Sophomore Nina Fassnacht said she went to Maine for the vacation week and only missed one day of school due to vacation planning.
Teachers are given the same amount of vacation time as the students, but are always there on the Monday after or the Friday before. Chemistry teacher Keith O’Connell said, “I don’t get upset in general if one of my students misses school. I feel that if they are traveling to somewhere new and exciting they should go out and explore it.” Mr. O’Connell also said, “If you are going to Disney World for the eighth time and miss a week of school because you don’t want to deal with the lines during April break then is that really necessary? I feel that missing school is ok if you are exploring someplace new because the world is the best classroom but if you are going somewhere that you’ve already been a couple times then that is unacceptable.”
As a result of missing school for the purpose of extending vacation many students are hit with makeup work upon their return. Nina F. said, “I didn’t really tell my teachers that I was missing school. I did miss a quiz and had to learn a lot of lessons.” Chatham E. said, “I didn’t really have a lot of makeup work but I did miss two tests that I had to make up.” Tayler K. said, “My teachers were not mad at me for missing school because of vacation, but I did have tons of makeup work.”
On the other hand Weimer lucked out. She said, “I didn’t have much makeup work. My teachers weren’t really that mad that I missed school.” Even though Elizabeth W. missed five days of school, she said she didn’t have a mountain of makeup work.
Students usually don’t have a say in whether or not they miss school due to vacation. Parents plan their vacations around how expensive it is to travel one day in comparison to another. Friday the fourteenth and Saturday the fifteenth were extremely expensive days to fly out of Boston, so many parents choose to let their students miss school instead of paying a couple hundred dollars more to get them back on time. Mr. O’Connell commented on the issue of airfare prices and said, “That I understand, a day is nothing but a week is too much.”