Jennifer DeJonghe canceled family plans and postponed her teenager’s driving lesson when she discovered the Minneapolis school year was getting a two-week extension to make up for missed learning time during the teachers’ strike.
She plans to send her two children to class until the last day of June 24 – one at Andersen Middle and the other at Roosevelt High – but both fear they will be among the only children there. And she heard from other parents who interpreted the extra days as optional or for students who needed to catch up on their lessons.
With most schools in Minnesota wrapping up the year this week, families in Minneapolis who had been banking on classes ending June 10 are now trying to figure out how to navigate two more weeks. And the approach of these extra days – classroom lessons? do homework online? how much flexibility? – seems to vary by school. This confusion is frustrating, DeJonghe said, especially after changing his June schedule.
“I want to support my children and their teachers,” she said. “It didn’t seem clear how best to do it.”
District officials say all students must attend school until completion, but students with scheduling conflicts can work with their principal to get permission to miss days. Even if excused, students must complete all assignments for the last two weeks of class.
“As with days of inclement weather, parents have the ultimate decision-making power over their child’s attendance at school and should speak to their principals about extenuating circumstances,” district spokeswoman Crystina Lugo wrote. Beach, in an email.
Seniors must also be present until the end of the school year, Lugo-Beach said, and diplomas can be picked up during the last week of school — several days after graduation ceremonies. Transportation will not change and dining will continue with some menu changes to “accommodate staff and the supply chain,” Lugo-Beach said. According to the menu posted on the district’s website, cold lunches will be served June 13-24. No classes will take place on June 20 to celebrate June 19.
Catalaya Medas, a senior from North Community High will be out of the country for the last few days of school. She and her mother had planned a trip to Guyana between the last day of school and the first day of work at Medas.
In May, North’s principal sent a letter to students and families telling them to contact school counselors if the extra school days presented a difficulty.
“It feels really good not to see this totally ruin my plans,” said Medas, who predicts that about half of his peers will miss these two weeks due to previous commitments, including summer jobs or travel plans.
Several schools, including high schools in the city, have offered similar accommodation. Southwest High asked teachers to outline classes for the past two weeks in advance so students know what they need to complete and what grades they need to improve.
“School days from June 13-24 will focus on enriching learning and improving a student’s current grades after final exams,” reads the plan posted on the school’s website. South West.
Elisabeth Hunt, the mother of a second-year student at Washburn High, said her son was the only one to raise his hand when a teacher asked who would be in the class until June 24. She still doesn’t know if he will have instructions or graded homework. next week, especially if only a handful of students show up.
“It’s good for schools to be flexible, but let’s make sure everyone knows what’s going on,” Hunt said. “I will feel like the worst mother if I force my child to go to school when he is the only one. He will never let me forget that.”