FHS: Say “Hello” to a Real Break

Sophia Sabinin-Leite

As the countdown begins toward holiday vacation, when we all should be dreaming about dancing sugar plums, striped candy canes, and most especially relaxing with our families and enjoying our lives outside of school, students have had to worry about the increasing amount of homework in our backpacks at FHS.

Over the years, as the high stakes in education have increased, so has the pressure on both students and teachers to meet these demands. Students at FHS have come to expect that homework will be given during the break, and in fact many dedicate several days of vacation time to the exclusive purpose of working on homework.  A true “vacation” it is not.  

However, just last week, the superintendent of schools in Duxbury, Dr. Ben Tantillo, broke with current protocol and announced that, “It does not matter to me whether expectations are self-imposed, generated by peers, parents, staff, Feds or State. We, teachers, students and administrators all need a break.”

Writing an email to town of Duxbury families, Tantillo made clear that there should be no homework for students AND no work for teachers done over winter vacation.

When hearing the news about Duxbury, Erin Doherty, FHS sophomore, claims “Teachers have a lot of pressure on them to have their students meet certain expectations, but the whole purpose of a vacation is to give students time to rest…so they are ready to work harder when they get back to school.”

Dan Sheehan, FHS sophomore, adds “winter break is shorter this year…, leading me to believe that it’s possible for teachers’ not to assign work and not lose much time in the curriculum.”  Quite possibly, a well-rested and reinvigorated faculty and student body just might be more motivated and productive than had everyone not taken a real break from work.

Katt Waples, FHS junior, also agrees, stating, “We get so much work during the year, on top of all the other things we do outside of school… students should not be expected to run at 100% all the time.” Waples concluded by explaining, “to perform our best, we need to be able to take time away from school and work.”

Let’s follow in Duxbury’s footsteps and have no work for students, administrators, and teachers! At the end of the day, we all need a break. What do YOU think FHS?

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