Virginia school board institutes midweek time off to relieve overworked teachers

Virginia school board institutes midweek time off to relieve overworked teachers
·2 min read

Faculty and students in a Virginia school district will see their school day end two hours early on some Wednesdays over the next three months to alleviate burnout for "overworked" teachers.

The Virginia Beach School Board voted 9-1 on Tuesday to pass a measure making school days shorter by two hours on seven Wednesdays following claims that teachers are "June-tired" after two months of instruction, according to a report.

Teachers are struggling to account for students' learning loss and staffing cuts dealt by the pandemic and quarantines, the district said.

VIRGINIA SCHOOL DISTRICT GIVES TEACHERS WEEK OFF FOR MENTAL HEALTH

"Our teachers are being asked to do more, to cover more, to cover cafeterias, to cover hallways, and to cover their colleagues' classrooms more so than they ever have before," Superintendent Aaron Spence said. "They are not able to prepare for instruction."

Problems are exacerbated because the district is understaffed by roughly 100 teachers and is suffering from severe absences.

"It kind of reminds me of that episode [of I Love Lucy] where she's working on that candy assembly line, and she can't keep up," said Kathleen Slinde, president of the Virginia Beach Education Association. "That episode was hilarious, right? But the idea of never being able to complete a task on time when it's your job is disheartening and demoralizing."

The Wednesday "breather" will provide teachers with unbroken planning time, and a Nov. 24 holiday has reportedly been created to help alleviate the mental pressures placed on the district's faculty.

Several parents and board members took issue with the Wednesday "breathers."

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One worried that parents might not be available to accommodate for the early dismissals, and another was concerned that cut-down school days would deprive students of their education.

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Tags: News, Virginia, Students, Mental Health, Education

Original Author: Luke Gentile

Original Location: Virginia school board institutes midweek time off to relieve overworked teachers

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