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dougiesmom
Working school year calendar around visitation with other parent
June 27 at 12:51 AM

The background info: We have had custody of DH's 11 year old daughter since she was 3, and visitation with her mom used to be every other weekend, sometimes more often, there's no set schedule. Back in October, her mom moved off and now lives almost 5 hours away. I already had the school calendar made out, so when she was able to go to her mom's, we let her go, and if she missed "school days," we simply changed her calendar, leaving our son's the same. That worked fine, until May arrived, and he finished his year on the 13th, and she still had 3 weeks to go. (If she had finished her curriculum, I would've let her be done, too, but she was even further behind than the 3 extra weeks she was gone.)

Fast forward to now, I'm trying to figure out our schedule for next school year, working around when bio mom is able to have DSD come visit. (Both she and DS have asked they not have different breaks; neither of them liked her working when he was done.) Because her step-dad's work schedule has him in our area every three weeks, that's the only time they'll get her for a visit. This is making planning my calendar very difficult. We don't usually do "fall break" or "spring break," because we like a long break for Christmas and getting out early in the summer, but since I don't want to keep DSD from seeing her mom from start of school to Christmas, I'm going to have to plan a 3 week fall break. I like to start them back the last Monday of July, but they're going to have her from July 17-Aug 6, pushing our start date back quite a bit. 

My question is, is there anyone else here who has to plan their school calendar around parental visitations, and if so, how do you do it? Even if you don't have to deal with it, do you have any advice? I think I just need some fresh perspective on it, but the way I'm feeling now, they're either going to have to have different breaks, or we're going to have to change to *official* year-round school. :(

Replies

  • bluerooffarm
    June 27 at 8:11 AM

    We don't really plan out our breaks way ahead of time to be more flexible.  Other than knowing that we are taking off the last week of September for a beach vacation, I have no idea what my school year will look like.  I keep track of our days in a planner as we do them and try to have 90 days before Christmas break.

    My hubby now works 10 days away and 5 days home, so we are scheduling school around that.  Our evaluator isn't too pleased with the change because we are working on weekends.  But other than that, homeschooling lets us have the flexibility to schedule around things!

  • coala
    by coala
    June 27 at 2:36 PM

    My advice is to schedule to the first break.  See how it goes.  If  you like how it worked then schedule to the next break.

    I personally only schedule 6 weeks in advance.  We work for 6 weeks and then take a week off.  We do this 6 times...finishing in mid October so that we can have the holidays to ourselves.

  • redhead-bedhead
    June 27 at 3:53 PM
    Why does your Evaluator have an issue with you working on the weekends?

    Quoting bluerooffarm:

    We don't really plan out our breaks way ahead of time to be more flexible.  Other than knowing that we are taking off the last week of September for a beach vacation, I have no idea what my school year will look like.  I keep track of our days in a planner as we do them and try to have 90 days before Christmas break.

    My hubby now works 10 days away and 5 days home, so we are scheduling school around that.  Our evaluator isn't too pleased with the change because we are working on weekends.  But other than that, homeschooling lets us have the flexibility to schedule around things!

  • bluerooffarm
    June 27 at 4:41 PM

    She really seems to take issue with anything done that doesn't mesh with what they do in the public school.  We took off all of December last year and she was nearly apoplectic when she saw all those blank pages in my planner.  LOL  My school only likes to accept certain evaluators, so I keep going to her.  Even though she wants me to use an all in one curriculum, take my breaks when the school takes theirs, and only take 2 field trips per year.  Mostly I ignore it.  I like to let people know that their evaluators do not run their homeschool.  I wish someone had told me about their battles years ago.  :-)

    Quoting redhead-bedhead: Why does your Evaluator have an issue with you working on the weekends?
    Quoting bluerooffarm:

    We don't really plan out our breaks way ahead of time to be more flexible.  Other than knowing that we are taking off the last week of September for a beach vacation, I have no idea what my school year will look like.  I keep track of our days in a planner as we do them and try to have 90 days before Christmas break.

    My hubby now works 10 days away and 5 days home, so we are scheduling school around that.  Our evaluator isn't too pleased with the change because we are working on weekends.  But other than that, homeschooling lets us have the flexibility to schedule around things!


  • kmath
    by kmath
    June 27 at 5:04 PM

    Is there anyway they could work with her when they have her?  That was our compromise. 

  • dougiesmom
    June 27 at 5:12 PM

    That would be ideal, but she and DS share a computer, so she can't take it with her. Also, if she were doing work on paper, they wouldn't make her do it; they'd have one of their other kids do it for her, or tell her the answers so it'd be in her handwriting. (That's happened before when she was doing workbooks.) They'd probably do the same with the computer work if I had a way to send it. I usually give them a list of what she's working on, and they say they work with her on it, but she doesn't generally come home with any better understanding than when she left. :(

    Quoting kmath:

    Is there anyway they could work with her when they have her?  That was our compromise. 


  • kmath
    by kmath
    June 27 at 5:16 PM

    That is total crap and makes your job a million times harder!  I'm sorry I don't have any better answers for you!

    Quoting dougiesmom:

    That would be ideal, but she and DS share a computer, so she can't take it with her. Also, if she were doing work on paper, they wouldn't make her do it; they'd have one of their other kids do it for her, or tell her the answers so it'd be in her handwriting. (That's happened before when she was doing workbooks.) They'd probably do the same with the computer work if I had a way to send it. I usually give them a list of what she's working on, and they say they work with her on it, but she doesn't generally come home with any better understanding than when she left. :(

    Quoting kmath:

    Is there anyway they could work with her when they have her?  That was our compromise. 


  • dougiesmom
    June 27 at 5:21 PM

    I always plan the whole year, but then we change a lot as we go. Doctor appointments, beautiful days, etc, get them out of school usually for the whole day. I thought just letting them work when they were here would be ok, and our son would enjoy being out early, but then he didn't like not having her to play with because she wasn't finished. ;) The main reason for planning out the breaks this year is simply to make sure she's on break when her step-dad's coming though, but at the same time if we do three week long breaks in the fall and spring, Christmas break is going to be tiny and it eats into our summer, which is generally jam-packed with things to do. BUT I also don't want to be a schedule Nazi and make them drive extra trips to fit with my calendar. (I have thought about threatening to send her back to public school and let them get her around their calendar, which I would never actually do. LOL!!) We have to get in 170 instructional days a year (and we have to start our year within 2 weeks of our local school's start date), so I'm really just trying to make sure we get that in.

    Quoting bluerooffarm:

    We don't really plan out our breaks way ahead of time to be more flexible.  Other than knowing that we are taking off the last week of September for a beach vacation, I have no idea what my school year will look like.  I keep track of our days in a planner as we do them and try to have 90 days before Christmas break.

    My hubby now works 10 days away and 5 days home, so we are scheduling school around that.  Our evaluator isn't too pleased with the change because we are working on weekends.  But other than that, homeschooling lets us have the flexibility to schedule around things!


  • dougiesmom
    June 27 at 5:25 PM

    Yes, it does. And I don't want to wish ill on anyone, but I do sometimes think it would be easier if her mom's life was crappy so she could see the result of not getting a proper education. As it stands now, we hear from her a lot, "Mom didn't go to school and she lives in a beautiful house with beautiful cars and lots of good food and cool stuff..." etc etc. (Her mom dropped out in *I think* 8th grade, but re-married well--a great guy who works hard. She doesn't see the fact that step-dad has an education; she sees that her mom has everything she wants and needs.)

    Quoting kmath:

    That is total crap and makes your job a million times harder!  I'm sorry I don't have any better answers for you!

    Quoting dougiesmom:

    That would be ideal, but she and DS share a computer, so she can't take it with her. Also, if she were doing work on paper, they wouldn't make her do it; they'd have one of their other kids do it for her, or tell her the answers so it'd be in her handwriting. (That's happened before when she was doing workbooks.) They'd probably do the same with the computer work if I had a way to send it. I usually give them a list of what she's working on, and they say they work with her on it, but she doesn't generally come home with any better understanding than when she left. :(

    Quoting kmath:

    Is there anyway they could work with her when they have her?  That was our compromise. 



  • kmath
    by kmath
    June 27 at 5:39 PM

    I don't think it is unreasonable to make them plan around your schedule if they want to see her.  If she were in school they would have to work around the PS schedule and just because you homeschool doesn't give them a free pass to be lazy and make your job harder.  Honestly I would schedule how you feel like and try to work around them some, but also make sure it works for you.  They need to compromise as well since they are the ones who moved.

    Quoting dougiesmom:

    I always plan the whole year, but then we change a lot as we go. Doctor appointments, beautiful days, etc, get them out of school usually for the whole day. I thought just letting them work when they were here would be ok, and our son would enjoy being out early, but then he didn't like not having her to play with because she wasn't finished. ;) The main reason for planning out the breaks this year is simply to make sure she's on break when her step-dad's coming though, but at the same time if we do three week long breaks in the fall and spring, Christmas break is going to be tiny and it eats into our summer, which is generally jam-packed with things to do. BUT I also don't want to be a schedule Nazi and make them drive extra trips to fit with my calendar. (I have thought about threatening to send her back to public school and let them get her around their calendar, which I would never actually do. LOL!!) We have to get in 170 instructional days a year (and we have to start our year within 2 weeks of our local school's start date), so I'm really just trying to make sure we get that in.

    Quoting bluerooffarm:

    We don't really plan out our breaks way ahead of time to be more flexible.  Other than knowing that we are taking off the last week of September for a beach vacation, I have no idea what my school year will look like.  I keep track of our days in a planner as we do them and try to have 90 days before Christmas break.

    My hubby now works 10 days away and 5 days home, so we are scheduling school around that.  Our evaluator isn't too pleased with the change because we are working on weekends.  But other than that, homeschooling lets us have the flexibility to schedule around things!


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