Changed vacation schedule --AHHHHHHH!


Our school system has had the same basic vacation schedule for years and next school year they are changing it! This change really affects our trip, which I already have airfare for.

Originally my kids would only miss 3 to 4 days, now with the change they are going to miss 8 or 9 days right before Christmas break! :eek: I am a little freaked out by this as my oldest is going to be in 6th grade. Now thankfully she is a very good student.

I am soo frustrated they picked this year to change things up!

All you out there who have taken your kids out of school what is the most they have missed??
Am I crazy to do this? My oldest goes to middle school the year after that and I figure from then on I will not be able to pull her out so this is our last chance to go off peak but 9 days I just don’t know!!



Okay…I am middle and high school teacher and I will give you my opinion…Pulling your kid out of school for nine days is a BIG deal! However, pulling you kid out eight or nine days before christmas break is not as BIG of a deal. Those last few days before break nothing ever get accomplished! SO…My suggestion is…alert your child’s teachers A.S.A.P…meaning Back to School Night. Chances are the teachers will forget by the time Christmas rolls around–but send them a note right before Thanksgiving asking for assingments close to the departure date. The send them another note again the week before you leave. I constantly forget when kids are going out of town–because I’ll be honest it is a pain to have to plan out work for one child–however–i dont think you should miss your trip and my little inconvience should not harbor on family time…My suggestion is just really nice to your kids teachers when it concerns the trip and make up work…I am one teacher who thinks a trip to wdw is an excused absense however we know that not all teachers feel that way…


We have been driving to MCO for 18 years, our kids are now 16 and 11 1/2.
We are leaving in 3 days and we are pulling them out 1 day ahead of vacation, in Feb it was 2.
Now that my son is in HS it’s alot harder, although he’s a great student, etc etc. They do cover alot and he was out for two weeks one week in Sept for a football injury and right before xmas for ear surgery.
Even though I go to school, get the work, he makes it up, even with dr’s notes they complain! Go figure!
Now that he is in HS they will not “pre give” him the work he will miss, although we always tell them a few* months ahead I even email the guidance/teacher listing etc etc they will not give the work out so we can take it on vacation, that stinks! So it’s very important he cannot miss alot.
When he gets back the teachers make a big thing to stay after school to help make up work (in NE especially here in the burbs) alot of the teachers I feel shouldn’t be teaching, I mean they moan and groan about staying after to help kids, I had to contact the principal’s office=they should really be in another line of work.
They promise you one thing, then after vacation, my son and myself have to chase these people to stay after to make things up if he missed a quiz,etc etc.
My dd is in elementary school, and I agree with the teacher who posted, it’s before vacation, she is a great student, so when she goes back they give her the work to make up. It’s my son in HS I am always concerned about.

Try to reschedule your trip, save yourself alot of hassling and your kids would be missing out on alot, I feel a couple days is okay, but 8 or 9 days in my opinion is alot.
Good luck in your decision.
3 more days to see the Mouse!


I’m a high school teacher and I feel that teachers not giving work ahead of time is completly ridiculous! I dont understand the harm in it—and teachers are supposed to have lessons mapped out months ahead of time! I have seen some teachers at the school where i work refuse to give out make up work…it’s just silly. Missing one week in the sixth grade wont fail your child… but a vacation with their family is something that they’ll always remember


I am all in favor of family trips. Time spent with family is so important as we don’t know what will happen tomorrow. Go on your trip, have fun, and make up what you can when you get back. Life is short and family is important.

As a teacher, I do what I can to help out when a student has to be gone. However, there is a limit to what I can do as far as re-teaching 1-2 weeks worth of material. I have had students miss a week and they jumped right back in and didn’t miss a beat, others will take weeks to recover. Nine days is a long time and the older the student the harder it is to miss school.


I happen to believe thaat Disney is not only a family trip, but it is also educational. EPCOT is very Educational. The world showcase and Innoventions can be incredible learning experiences. That is the way they were designed. You cannot help but learn something there while also having fun. Stress to your child’s teacher that the trip will be fun as well as educational. During the holidays the kids will also learn about the different christmas tradition and santas in the different nations. I know that is what my DD is looking forward to during her trip during her break.


That just stinks. 9 days is a big deal normally. Nine days before christmas break even more so in my DD’s school. They load the tests on etc right before the break trying to wrap up whatever material they were covering before the break. One teacher claimed that she does that because it’s like starting from scratch after the holiday…the kids have to be retaught what they were doing, so she likes to end the lesson before the break. I would honestly see if you can alter your plans. I agree that family time is very important and just as important as school, but you are talking nine days out of school before a long vacation. That’s a lot of time and material to make up or relearn. If you think your child can do that, they no worries. If not, I would seriously try and change your dates to go with their break a bit more. The last days leading up to their break should be the safest to pick to miss. I have found that my DD always has “heck” week with tests the full week before the break.


I am also a teacher and agree with those who say that 9 days is alot to miss. Our schools generally give some sort of tests during that time right before Christmas, and it is true that kids do forget a lot of information during the holiday break so it is best to test them before they get out. I would recommend rescheduling or shortening your vacation. While family time is very important, don’t jeopardize your childs school work because of it. For some kids missing that much time would leave them seriously behind even if they could do some of the work while on vacation. Make up work can’t replace the teaching they miss while out of the classroom.


I agree that a lot of school work still happens the week before Christmas vacation. I always try to wrap up a unit before we get out of school. In my school we work right up to the day before vacation, I try to plan my chapter/unit test for Thursday if we get out on Friday.


I hear ya We are taking our kids out for 7 days ouch! I feel that it is important for our family to have these trips for the memories and together time. Mind you I am going to alert my kids teachers in plenty of time! But this is a huge deal for our family! I say go for it they are not this little for long! :crying:


I say GO for it! Both our boys, a freshmen and upcoming six grader are at the top of thier classes. DW is right on them regarding homework and tests, the two combined maybe miss five days a year, they are doing fine! DW is STRIT!!! Its me thats the scondrel!!! They have to be ready for life, but they also have to enjoy life!!! Cruise on lady!!! :smile: :smile:


So you expect teachers to stay after school on their own time, without pay, to reteach material that your child missed because you chose to go on vacation?? That is not fair. I am a teacher and I have my own family to go home to each night and I wouldn’t feel it would be my responsibility to take time away from them to help a child after school who was on vacation. Plus, if 5 or 6 students do this during the year, that is a lot of “volunteer” tutoring that teacher is putting in.


Another teacher weighing in here.
I, too, feel that family vacations are a great opportunity to create memories and spend precious time together. However, nine days, even in middle school is a lot. I teach math and science and am always wrapping up a unit right before Christmas so that we can start fresh when we come back. I make my lesson/unit plans up well in advance but kids that are out for two weeks will be missing labs etc. These take a lot of extra (read free) time to prep and are valuable learning experiences. Sure, the student can write their test early (which means making up a second unit exam - lots of extra work) or write it after they return but let’s face it, they won’t do as well because they have either missed 2 weeks of additional teaching or have been out of the school mentality for a month. (Two weeks vacation plus two weeks school break.) It is your choice to take your child out of school but if their learning and marks are impacted, don’t blame the teacher. Remember 2 weeks of math could mean that your child misses an entire section of the curriculum. This means that he/she may not have the foundation needed for higher grades.
I can give make up work but that is no substitute for my teaching and the activities we do in class. I have had as many as 164 students a year (thankfully it has been less the last few years). Can you imagine if 20% of them took 2 weeks off? I would have 33 students expecting me to catch them up. That’s alot!
So, as I said earlier, it is your choice to take your child out of school but if their learning and marks are impacted, don’t blame the teacher.
End rant…


having been in the travel industry for 10 plus years, I have had to move trips for myself/others.
There may be fees involved. But think about it.

When kids miss classroom time, and if you get the help when you return, your even more luckier.
I know what we go through, in our town, they will not pre give it out.
The teachers who posted on here, obviously go to Disney and have a family of their own, not all the case all the time.
I have had to deal with some immature/arrogant/and rude educators when we go on our trips both in Feb/April to see the Mouse.
We only now take the kids out 1/2 days before. Too much to deal with.
I have been told, I should make other plans.
That’s what we have been doing for years and both of my kids love it and we all love the family time we have, so that’s not going to change.
Glad to see there are some wonderful caring teachers out there, who realize that traveling is an adventure.
When we lived in NH (5 years ago) the kids were alot younger and although they went to different schools, they were given Journals to write about and be creative with.
My daughter who is the 5th grade, I suggested that to her homeroom teacher and was told it wasn’t necessary, we do one anyway, for us.
On our trip in Feb of this year we stopped in DC/and in Savannah, GA and St Augustine, FL we did the trolley tours and the kids (and us) loved it.
Education is all around us.
Continue to share it with your children.
And yes, the memories will last a lifetime.
In two years, after going to FL for years, my son who is in the HS will be going to college right outside Orlando.
Funny, hugh?!
FL is a beautiful state!

sorry for all the ranting (again).
2 more days until the Mouse!!!


How about buying your child an iQuest? You can buy cartridges for their grade level that are downloaded from many textbooks. (my DD’s are included-there is a list on the back showing which textbooks are included) It’s small and makes studying fun for the kids. “Prepare fpr tests and quizzes by downloading fun quizz games based on specific chaptures from actual textbooks! Over 200 textbooks online! Thousands of chapture questions and chapter outlines from your math, science, and ss textbooks for grades 5-8”(from back of box!) Not the same as the classroom, but it should help your DD not get too behind. What do all you teachers out there think of this?


we also have done this many times, however once they get to middle or high school, their grades are really impacted my the missed days. So if they are still in grade school i say go ahead while you still can. they usually can take their work with them and finish it on the way.


It’s hard being a Libra - you always see both sides of the problem. I’ve read all these responses with interest.

But, I must say I agree with pumouse. As long as they are still in grade school - go for it. Once they’re in middle school, the dynamics change. We always took our kids out of school for vacations when they were young and I must admit I wouldn’t have changed a thing. Try and work with the teachers. My experience is that if you give them plenty of notice and communicate clearly and honestly, something can be worked out. If they’re unwilling to do this - well, you’re an educated adult and your child has textbooks. I don’t think it’s unreasonable to suppose that you could muddle through a week of lessons with her on your own. With all the individual attention, she might even get a bit ahead. Life is too short. Enjoy these opportunities while you can.


Wouldn’t it be wonderful if children were born clutching an instruction book for the use of parents who have difficult decisions to make? Fact is that they’re not and all parents have to do what they think is best in their own particular circumstances. Some decisions we get right and some wrong. The only problem is that by the tme you know what the correct decision was, it’s way too late, and any damage caused cannot be put right.

I’m not a teacher, but I am a parent. I took a decision a long time ago that my children would not be taken out of school for anything other than illness. In my view when you sign up as a parent, you know the deal. If you have children you are stuck with peak weeks, so as responsible parents we accept that and plan our holidays around the school calendar.

You are the sole judges of what you think is best for your children and you must be guided by your own conscience. If you are truly convinced that such an absence will not harm your children’s education then go with it. However, if you truly think that you shouldn’t take them out for such a time, then don’t. You can have another holiday, but you can never repair a damaged education. As parents, the choice is yours and as long as you do what you truly believe to be best for the children then you have nobody to answer to.

That’s my sincere view and I pass no judgement on anyone else. Good luck. :smile:


Thanks for all the well thought out responses!! I appreciate everyone’s input very much!!

I am by trade a teacher too. So this really is hard for me! Our school system is on Trimesters so this time is generally NOT a big test time at least at the Elememtary level!!

I think what I might do is talk to the teacher right away in August and explain what happened with the schedule changing after all these years and HOPE they understand!! I am not as concerned with my 8 and 6 yo because I know they will not have as much!

We will have two weeks over break when we get back to work on make up and I am more than willing to teach the subject matter as I use to teach 6th graders! I guess that is how I will approach it with my DD teachers!!! This is just so hard!! :sad:

My DH says we should just go because evertime we have taken them out our DD has always come back ahead of the whole class! Which is true… I am still struggling with the amount of time tho!


I think you’ve answered your own question:

  1. You’re a teacher

  2. You taught 6th grade and are very capable of teaching your child a week’s worth of lessons.

  3. There are no tests scheduled for that particular time

  4. Your daughter has come back from other trips, ahead of her class

  5. Ok (this one’s killing me) You’re husband is right. :glare: