Thursday, April 28, 2011

Recess policy

"followed through with contributions you all asked for"
"all of that information came to me"
"parents typically are finding at their school is what they like"
"principals are working with their site council and things are working at their schools"
strong feedback from principals asking for more autonomy
"general policy is acceptable to everyone"
"to adjust from a very solid 30 minutes to 15-30 minutes"

Al Ganem, principal of City View School
on behalf of the Principal Association
"again we all agree with the policy to have students have recess"
"every school is unique"
"we are trusted to make decisions and follow policies every day in our schools"
Rebecca (I can't spell your last name, either; sorry!)
"in support of mandating 30 minutes of recess for my kids"
"learning that needs to happen that can happen through recess"
"I don't feel that 15 minutes is an amount of time that allows that to happen"
"I was not given that opportunity at my school" (to give input)
Liz DeHoratius, parent at Thorndyke
"we missed out on the initial opportunity to share"
"rushing through both" (15 minutes for lunch and recess)
"left as a suggestion, will stay 15 minutes"
"my boys need to get out there, they need to run and they need to play"
"if providing 30 eat and play..seems hard, it seems like there's something wrong"
"I'm not sure that kids fundamentally have changed that much...feels like a real disconnect"
"for everything to be swallowed by the testing feels less tolerable as time goes along"
Joanna Jalbert, three at Thorndyke
the way it works at school is not acceptable
"important to me that my child is considered as a whole child"
"mandating 30 minutes of recess"

the mayor asks how many schools do only 15 minutes
15 have 30; the rest have either 20 or 15 minutes

"it's amazing the research on recess"
ERIC (I'll hook this up later; it's online)
"breaks are considered essential for satisfaction and alertness"
"may be the only opportunity for some children to engage in social interaction"
latchkey kids may have no interaction once they leave school
"physical inactivity"
"recess can play an important role in learning"
"no research clearing supports not having recess"
"an extension of the learning process"
"a flexible policy needs to take place...discussion needs to take place with site council and support 30 minutes"
MOTION: evaluate policy come next May

question was even more confusing
principals all led us to believe that they all saw that the kids got a break
"operating under that assumption, I assumed it was happening everywhere"
"common sense for a teacher...I can't imagine that it isn't going on that way"
thinks there might be exaggeration going on what actually happens
"I sure hope that they took to heart what we said last fall...flexibility was"to do it
"there has to be some sort of coffee break"
"I can't believe it isn't happening"
before lunch/after lunch

16 do 30 minutes, 9 do 20, 8 do 15 minutes
(Jacob Hiatt is an extended day and does 35)
"that's just the recess time" Mulqueen
"just during the day, just for recess"
Mullaney: "why are those 8 schools not allowing a stretch break?"
Mulqueen: "wouldn't include a snack break"
Mullaney: "is it happening in every school that in the morning they stop the action and everyone gets to move around a little bit?"
Boone: "in the pure sense of recess, in the sense of free play and activity"
support for recess (in terms of finances)
"to engage in activity" not just a snack break
activity where the students get to choose what they do
Mullaney: if that break is happening, it's very relevant to me
"not outside..some kids just stand around anyway"
Mulqueen: "don't want to present that we have consistent snack time across the district"
would pay money for pictures of Mr. Monfredo playing hopscotch
"so much more to do in the district than recess"
"typically will support autonomy of principals"
"I am getting worried that we are putting too much pressure on our principals and on our children"
"worried about the reaction of children, and particularly boys"
concerned about boys...hearing from more and more people
"challenges with space..issues with winter"
"have to try to be creativity with solutions"
will support 30 minutes of recess
"to work with teachers, with the families...for best practices"
Novick: a hundred years of research supporting recess
"why is this controversial" was asked over and over
O'Brien: "hesitate to make" principals' lives more complicated than they are
son's problems became dramatically more over the winter
"I'm not a scientist...there's something there"
"we have schools that basically have the same amount of time to work with, but some manage"
"every school on the West Side has 30 minutes, why is that?"
student says 10 minutes; mayor asks why it says 30 minutes
asks for an email if it's ten or thirty at Flagg
Boone: challenges around creating the full 30 minutes
major shifts in their master schedules since the school year has started
"I'm concerned when recess and grades are used as a discipline option"
the mayor points out that a dollar a student doesn't add up to that much per school
Mullaney asks about outdoors: Boone goes back to the policy which says "recess shall be held out of doors, weather permitting"
Foley: "clearly in the winter months, it's harder to go outside"
"activities in the classroom"
"take best efforts on that"
Mullaney "think this committee wants to say...we want them to take 15 minutes off and get away from their books"
"I was given an understanding...let's get real here, and let's be sure" that we didn't intend
alternate ways of "fulfilling the belief that we all share"
"schools honor bound not to mess with us"
"can't vote for a half an hour"
Mayor tries to broker a compromise: is ten minutes inside okay for a break?
Novick: No.
That's not the same..."let's make it mandate"
"at least as important as passing MCAS, and meeting AYP...some would say more so"
Monfredo: "regardless of what we pass tonight, we still need to have a conversation with the schools"
"we tend to try to do the right thing tonight"
Mullaney: what about weather?
It's in the policy..."weather permitting"
principal of Burncoat Prep: "thinking about the balances that we have to create every day in our schools"
"glad to hear the concern for disadvantaged children...have served disadvantaged children for 30 minutes"
"a seat at the table by learning to read and write and do arthematic"
parking lot riddled with holes
got a call from a neighbor who was very insulted that the kids use the park during the day
recess before lunch: "works for us...move and get some things out of their system before they eat"
"do have a working snack, but it's not ruthless, like it sounds..."
"all of our schools have different populations and different obstacles"
the mayor asks for the report (that we'd requested) on facilities avaliable to schools within seven days
Monfredo suggests a waiver
Biancheria: one thing sticks in my mind...I would truly appreciate having access to the list
"the West Side has 30 minutes, the rest has 15 or 20 minutes"
there are others included, as well
as the draft is apparently not correct, the motion is to hold for a week

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