Monday, June 10, 2024

When I was growing up, this was about the time we would get out of school

It was only when I became a parent that I realized how amazingly short our kids' summer break from school really was.

At least in our district (though I think this is common), they don't even have 12 full weeks off before they're right back in the classroom.

Not that I think there's anything wrong with that, by the way. Indeed, during my time working with The Cleveland Foundation, I came to see some advantages to having year-round school with extended breaks between quarters/semesters.

It's just that, when I was a kid, summer vacation seemed to go on forever. It was great. We would get out in mid-June and not be back until after Labor Day.

I don't remember a single summer ever flying by or seeming too short, which may suggest that my friends and I did it right and made the most of our vacation time.

Later on as a parent, however, those 11 1/2 weeks would fly by in an instant. That's probably a function of time in general passing more quickly once you become an adult, but I could never reconcile the fleeting nature of my kids' summer vacations with the seemingly longer breaks I had as a kid.

In any event, as today's headline suggests, this is about the time of year in the 1970s and 80s when we would have our last day of school. That seems quaint now because, as far as I know, no local school district has been in session for at least a week, and many for longer than that. The kids almost universally get out in mid/late May or early June these days.

I don't know that that's any better or worse than the way we did it in my youth, it's just different.

Even with my kids grown, I still can't get used to it.


  1. We've been on this calendar for at least 10 years now, and still feels weird to me. Graduations start the week before Memorial Day, and the OHSAA baseball state tournament ended yesterday. That means athletes were still in-season almost three weeks after graduating. On the other hand, your May could be slammed with term papers, finals, prom and sports and then your team gets eliminated, you graduate, and just like that, you're an adult.

    1. Agreed all around, Howard. The shift away from a post-Labor Day start began (at least in Wickliffe) in the mid- to late 80s. Now Wickliffe is set to begin the 2024-25 school year on Tuesday, August 13. The 13th!