Handling spring break absences
Found in: Attendance
Christine R., Kansas
Spring Break question: almost all school districts in my area have spring break on the same days every year, and at least half of my students are gone the entire week. In the past, I have just used this as one of my vacation weeks, but this coming year I really don’t want to take that week off. I have another trip planned and have no plans to vacation when everyone else is gone for spring break. I could try to condense the lessons for students that stay in town that week so I’m not doing just a few each evening, but my real concern is trying to make up lessons for those that are out of town, since my schedule is now full from 3-8pm Monday through Thursday and I’m not crazy about doing weekend make-up lessons. Any thoughts here on whether or not I owe make-up lessons in this situation? Or on how to present it to my parent base that I won’t be making them up if they’re out of town, since I’m not taking the week off?
Maureen K., California
In situations like that I teach things that won’e leave the others behind. For example, we’ll work on blues jamming (one person plays Jackson Blues and the others take turns improvising using either the blues scale or the CAGE chord). Or, we’ll focus on an arrangement or two. And/or do playlist review. Play some games.
I find that while we carefully count our own vacation weeks, our studio families are not as concerned, as long as it all feels reasonable. Once I didn’t take a Sunday before Labor Day off and families were mostly gone and confused why I held piano. I was carefully counting days and trading off vacations, trying to give everyone the same number of lesson days. I think they expect that usual holidays will be off. I would say take it off and don’t worry.
Brenda D., Colorado
I just plan on not teaching during spring break. I take it as a vacation week.
Rochelle G., California
I think it’s early enough before spring break that you could give your calendar out and it is what it is. If they miss, they miss.
Rebecca G., Colorado
My personal feeling is it’s not particularly fair to require attendance/payment for a lesson during a widely-accepted school break when many families take a vacation. Perhaps you could consider letting those who want to attend lessons that week do so, and those who are not available get a tuition break that month equal to one lesson’s cost.
Joy O., Alabama
Parents may be willing to miss the lesson without a single-lesson refund, since they don’t pay per lesson but rather per month. That monthly rate has the up-and-down number of lessons included as part of what I explain when we discuss rates and studio policies.