Move PSS Break to March
Please take the time to read this as it is very important issue. If you share the same views and concerns please sign this petition. If you so feel compelled, call Tracy or send her an email as well, she wants to hear from the families!
As many of you know a survey was put out this year. One of the questions asked was whether we should keep the February and April Vacations or change to one break in March. The survey came back with a 50/50 split and it was announced that we would keep the existing Boston Public School schedule. Many people have voiced their dissatisfaction with the decision. The school is willing to reconsider the decision and if they receive enough feedback will do so. Below are the reasons why many families would prefer to no longer follow the BPS schedule.
1. From a marketing standpoint, for Park Street School, our branding will be better if we align with what we say we are. Our intention is to be the premier INDEPENDENT Christian school in Boston. One of the questions that is frequently asked by applicants is - why do we, as an independent school, not follow March break? Following Boston Public Schools weakens our brand. It can also be a deterrent to people who apply with multiple children and are looking forward to placing them in independent middle schools.
2. Due to the fact that March break is a solid two weeks off, it allows families more flexibility to travel in a financially feasible way. Prices are lower for vacationing and air fare, and you are not tied to a Saturday to Saturday schedule - as you are with February and April breaks.
3. The majority of families at Park Street School want the option for their children to attend independent middle schools. However, this poses a problem with our current schedule because it causes the family to be on different school schedules (ie. start/end times, break times, etc.). This is very disruptive and detrimental to the quality of family life, which is why this is such a big issue for so many current families.
4. The accommodation the school has made to allow families to pull students out for March break, all be it nice of them... has many pitfalls. First off, it is not good for the teachers and very cumbersome for them to gather the work load it requires to miss two weeks of school. Secondly, it is not good for the classroom and other students to be missing many of their schoolmates for two weeks. Thirdly, it is disruptive to the classroom when several children need to be brought back up to speed upon reentering. Lastly, it is not good for the child who gets pulled out, as we can all imagine how much work and extra tutoring is required to make up the lost time.
5. Currently, several families who are affected by the scheduling conflicts of having children who have graduated to independent schools (ie. Roxbury Latin, Windsor, Nobles, Dana Hall, Newton Country Day, Belmont Hill, etc.) are facing a decision of pulling the remaining students they have at Park Street in order to enroll them in private elementary schools that align with the independent school scheduling model. This will be tragic and very costly to our school community. Starting with a major financial impact and the ripple effect of hurting morale and community life. This can be avoided by following the direction the school has communicated its desire to be - an independent school, with an independent school schedule.
6. This past year and more likely than not in the future, we will have another winter that causes us to take snow days. The school has accommodated and no longer will necessarily adhere to the snow days that are being called by BPS but nevertheless we will still be tied to their start and end dates. In fact, an article this winter was written about this exact issue in the Globe:
If you are also concerned or share the same sentiment as other parents that have laid out the issues as stated above, please sign this petition and help us make the change.