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Timetabling problems

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#1 The Great Sosso

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Posted 20 May 2019 - 10:08

Hi everyone


My son is starting secondary school in September, which means that my schedule will also change, as I will need to pick him up from his bus stop.   At present we do not know what time he will be getting home on each day of the week - there are two buses and it will depend on the clubs and after-school activities he chooses.


Up until now I have taught only on a Thursday after school for 3 hours (4-7pm), but this will have to change to accommodate the boy's new schedule.

I can't fix my teaching time table for next term, until I know my son's movements, but equally he can't fix his schedule until he actually starts school.


Would you:


(a) tell son he has to get the late bus on Thursdays come what may, and arrange teaching schedule accordingly - basically only moving the last lesson to free me up to fetch him.  I assume he could do homework in the library until the late bus leaves, but he's not a great self-starter;

(b) move teaching to other times in the week that definitely will not clash with any bus ( - eg every day one student at 4pm, potentially ruining my life as I don't want to teach every day and also messing students around a bit as I will likely move them again once I know what son is doing each day);

(c ) cancel lessons for first 2-3 weeks of next term until I know what the schedule looks like; or

(d) any other option I haven't thought of.


Son making his own way home from the bus stop is not an option, unfortunately.

Lift share with other parent potentially could be an option but he is going to a different school from any of his current friends so it will take some time to build up a network of parents we can share lifts with.

I am anxious not to mess students / their parents around too much, as I think it's only fair they know where they stand.


Please help me organise my life!




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#2 Dorcas



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Posted 20 May 2019 - 10:33

Tricky one.  If you do not teach for the first two weeks of term, would you risk losing students?  It might be your least favourite option, but  organising your teaching so it is not impacted by your son's bus, club and library timetable is preferrable.  The danger of telling your son he has to stay late no matter what on a Thursday could come a cropper if the library closes early.  The problem with the after school clubs is sometimes they can be cancelled or rescheduled, so relying on them running is difficult.

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#3 BadStrad



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Posted 20 May 2019 - 11:20

Well of course, there might not be any activities he wants to do, or they might run on other days than Thursday, so if it were me I'd carry on as normal until something needs to change.

If you feel you need to say something to the (3 - 6?) pupils, you could mention that you *might* have to change to a different teaching day and canvas when would work for them so you have that information, but of course some of them could be moving schools and have Thursday clubs.
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#4 Hedgehog



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Posted 20 May 2019 - 11:23

In my experience, clubs at senior school often run on the same day from one year to another. Is it possible for you to ask the Head of Year 7 what clubs run in the Autumn term and what day they run on?  You should have an introductory "moving up" day for your son at the new school in July, and that would be a good opportunity to pursue this question.  

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#5 zwhe



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Posted 20 May 2019 - 13:18

I would start by contacting the school to see what they have on offer - most of the secondary schools near me keep the library open for an hour or two after school for pupils to do their homework. Some schools might insist they leave school promptly if not doing a supervised activity. Once you know what your options are, it might be easier to plan.

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#6 SingingPython


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Posted 22 May 2019 - 10:31

Is he likely to eventually be able to get home from the bus stop independently (eg by bike, even if not till next year), or is this going to be a long term thing unless lift shares can be organised?  Are you hoping to expand your teaching or is the small amount you are doing about right for the forseeable?


My mother did remedial teaching from home, so a bit different to music lessons, but she always aimed to give daytime lessons in the week before school went back, to help kids get back into zone, then no lessons for the first week or two until they were settled and less tired.  If giving a lesson or two at the end of the holidays works for you and your students, this could be a useful adjunct to waiting till you know your son's timings before starting back regular lessons.

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#7 sbhoa



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Posted 22 May 2019 - 12:22

Is there no nearer bus so that he can come home on his own?

That would be my first option but you may be more remote than we are.

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