Summer School

School's out for summer! Unless you live in McKinney. Or you just like high school girls.

Lots of reasons to be proud of living in McKinney these days. Cute little town square. Big green Wal-Mart. One school ranked among Newsweek’s best. Or is it two?

But down at the McKinney Independent School District: Not a lick of common sense. Otherwise, my 10-year-old wouldn’t be in school today -- four days after he graduated from 4th grade. See, when the school board geniuses got to work on the 2006-'07 calendar, they forgot to buffer in a snow day or two. And, whatdya know, back on January 17 classes were canceled due to ice. So in order to make their 180 days of classes quota, McKinney had to slap an extra day -- you guessed it -- at the end of the school year, May 29.

While going to school after school’s out is confusing to the tiny tikes, it’s down right maddening to high school seniors who last week walked across the stage and picked up their diplomas. Or did they? School officials, compounding their F-minus in planning, realized how ridiculous it is to ask a former student to show up for one more day of class. So, instead of (wink, wink) opening doors for classes, they gave the seniors fake diplomas and required attendance today to get the real thing. And this is where it really gets stupid.

The adults actually expect the kids to show up and learn? “It’s not going to be a movie day,” said district spokesman Cody Cunningham, who desperately needs a summer course called WTF 101. “It’s not going to be a ‘sit back and clean your room’ sort of day. It will be an instructional day.”

Instructional, all right. A lesson in how to alienate kids by making them pay for adults’ short-sighted mistakes. --Richie Whitt

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