DISD: Extended Teachers' Hours Could Change

The board meets at 5:30 p.m. Thursday to review the proposal

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    The Dallas Independent School District board will meet at 5:30 p.m. Thursday to discuss whether or not to keep the 45-minute extended educators' schedule. (Published Thursday, Nov. 29, 2012)

    A controversial extended teacher workday in Dallas could be reversed on Thursday.

    Dallas teachers have loudly protested a 45-minute extension to their schedule this school year. 

    Thursday night, Trustees could remove the new work rules, but it doesn’t mean longer days would automatically disappear.  It takes the board out of the equation, and puts the teachers’ schedules in the hands of new Superintendent Mike Miles.  The new hours passed before Superintendent Miles took his position this summer.

    Teachers have been adamantly opposed to the additional 45 minutes added to their schedule without additional pay.

    Educators argue the now 8.5 hour day extends an already long day on top of grading papers and lesson plans.  Teachers also say it takes away from important one-on-one time with staff, students or parents. 

    “We have lost that critical time of day when a teacher can meet with parents or students,” says former teacher Bill Bentzen.

    A recent teachers association survey shows more than 90 percent of teachers don’t think the extended day is helpful to students or improves achievement.

    Right now, teachers report that morale is terrible with nearly of the teachers surveyed saying they feel discouraged, exhausted, or ready to leave the district.

    Association leaders have been urging the district to repeal the work rule.

    "DISD does not allow teachers to give students busy work, and it shouldn't allow administrators to assign busy work to teachers," said George Rangel with Alliance AFT.

    The new hours passed before Superintendent Miles took his position this summer.

    Trustees are expected to pass the proposal. 

    The board meets at 5:30 p.m. Thursday at DISD Headquarters, 3700 Ross Avenue. 

    Check back for updates.