After parents spoke out against the changes to recess at Mohegan School, superintendent Freeman Burr said he is concerned about the split it has created amongst the parent community and that a meeting will be held to "get the issue resolved on common ground."
Q: How was the decision to cut recess at Mohegan made?
A: Central office does not get involved in scheduling. All scheduling is done on the school site by their administration. PTA representatives said there was a meeting held on the topic to discuss it. That’s what I’ve been told by 2 members of the PTA executive board at Mohegan. I don’t know if there are people who didn’t go to the meeting and didn’t agree with what went on but my understanding is that it was on agenda, and it was addressed and discussed. The decision was ultimately made by [Principal Anne] Hamilton along with consultation with some of her staff members.
Q: Why is this policy only for Mohegan School and not the other public elementary schools?
A: Each school creates their own shedule. I'll assume that at some point Mrs. Hamilton and the staff felt reducing recess was no longer an issue and intended to focus on teaching and learning.
Q: Is this something the other elementary schools could implement?
A: I’ve heard the rumor that we allowed Mohegan to do it because we are going to make it district-wide—I think that’s an irresponsible rumor. The intent of changing the schedule was designed to address problems they felt needed it. Clearly the solution has not been embraced by parents. The goal will be to make sure there is a schedule in place that addresses the concerns that this schedule was supposed to address, but also take input from parents who’ve expressed their own concerns.
Q: What actions is the staff taking to resolve the conflict?
A: There will be a meeting held with representative constituents from both sides of the issue. At the last BOE meeting, two people were upset about recess, one in spoke in favor of the current status. I have gotten multiple calls, e-mails and I met with a few parents on both sides of the issue. Assistant superintendent Lorraine Rossner and principal Hamilton will be present. We’ll sit down and we will get the issue resolved on common ground to satisfy parents on both sides. The end goal is to continue to maintain the benefits we’ve realized in the schedule for increased academic time.