Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Superintendent John Stewart questions early-release Wednesdays

Add Pinellas County interim superintendent John Stewart to the list of critics of early-release Wednesdays.

The practice of dismissing students one hour early so that teachers can have time for planning has drawn criticism from parents and others since it began in 2009.

When discussion at Tuesday's School Board workshop turned to planning for the 2012-13 school year calendar, board member Robin Wikle asked if there were any issues that needed to be addressed.

At first, no one said anything. Then Stewart volunteered his view:

"I never miss a chance to say … early-release days are not serving the purpose they were originally intended," he said, acknowledging that a change in the schedule requires bargaining with the teachers union. "But if we go as a united voice, it's a lot better than if we say some of us think that."

Stewart said later that he feels the shortened days pose a hardship for families, particularly single-parent households. He also said he thinks they disrupt students' focus and can interrupt instruction.

He said he agrees that teachers need time for staff development and planning but thinks there are other ways to find that time.

"We'll begin that discussion," he said.

In a Web-based poll administered by the school district and published in February, a majority of parents surveyed at all grade levels favored eliminating early-release days, while most staffers and students said they favored keeping them.

Rebecca Catalanello can be reached at (727) 893-8707 or rcatalanello@sptimes.com.

Superintendent John Stewart questions early-release Wednesdays 10/08/11 [Last modified: Saturday, October 8, 2011 4:31am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. The rise and humiliating fall of Chris Cantwell, Charlottesville's star 'fascist'

    Nation

    The white supremacists, nationalists and far-right trolls who starred in last weekend's violent Charlottesville, Virginia, rallies have suffered no lack of humiliation in the days since.

    White nationalist Chris Cantwell has had quite the week after being featured prominently in an HBO news program on the march in Charlottesville, Virginia, last weekend. [Evelyn Hockstein for The Washington Post]
  2. MLB umpires wear wristbands to protest 'abusive player behavior'

    Ml

    Major League Baseball umpires wore white wristbands during games Saturday, protesting "abusive player behavior" after Detroit second baseman Ian Kinsler was fined but not suspended for his recent verbal tirade against ump Angel Hernandez.

    Home plate umpire D.J. Rayburn wears a wristband to protest "abusive player behavior" on umpires by players as Rayburn heads to his position to call the first inning of a baseball game between the Milwaukee Brewers and and the Colorado Rockies late Saturday, Aug. 19, 2017, in Denver. [Associated Press]
  3. Tropical Storm Harvey could regroup but stay clear of Florida

    Weather

    The remnants of former Tropical Storm Harvey could rebound while two other systems brewing in the Atlantic Ocean are unlikely to develop into severe weather.

    The remnants of former Tropical Storm Harvey could rebound while two other systems brewing in the Atlantic Ocean are unlikely to develop, according to the National Hurricane Center. [National Hurricane Center]
  4. Fatal hit and run closes section of Nebraska Avenue

    Accidents

    TAMPA — Police are investigating a fatal hit and run crash early Sunday morning on Nebraska Avenue.