[Last week’s] article suggesting that the Fairfax County School Board is reconsidering the Monday elementary schedule may unnecessarily alarm people. The issue was brought up by one board member during a work session about teacher workload. Two other board members, out of twelve, voiced support.
The Monday schedule was not on the agenda to be discussed, so it was not something staff, board members or the public had had time to think about ahead of the meeting. In order for that issue to be on our agenda in a meaningful way, a board member would have to propose a change and get a majority of the 12-member board to agree to move ahead with what would certainly be a long process of community engagement before a change would be made.
Monday afternoon planning time is very important to teachers and I would not want them to think there is currently any serious inclination on the board as a whole to change that. It was an unexpected topic of discussion among a minority of board members.
If it is raised again, I personally would not support going forward with a public discussion at this time. It would distract us from our focus on more important work and would make teachers worry that we’re not serious when we say we want to protect their planning time.
The writer is the Hunter Mill representative on the Fairfax County School Board.