Your View: Intersession is for teaching children, not to babysit them


To the editor:

The Alexandria Times does not appear to understand the role of intersessions at Mount Vernon Community School. In School system balks at reducing intersession program, (September 8, 2011), the author stated “… many parents depend on intersession for child care.” That is incorrect. The intersession is for enhanced learning.

Our children are in the second and fourth grade at MVCS. We chose MVCS specifically because of its calendar and the intersession program. The intersessions are opportunities for our boys to learn new ideas that reinforce what they have been learning in the classroom. We do not depend on the intersessions to provide childcare. We depend on them to add to our sons’ educations.

Interssion is not day care. Our sons have reinforced their math skills and understanding of fractions while cooking foods that were talked about during a story they read as a class. They have studied world cultures, each day focusing on a different country. They have honed their writing and teamwork skills while developing a play, and they have learned about the science of good nutrition. During the intersessions, they are enjoying learning and return to their regular classes with enhanced enthusiasm.

We will never forget when we took our older son to the National Gallery of Art shortly after an art intersession program when he was in kindergarten. A visitor asked one of the docents where the Jackson Pollack paintings were located. The docent said that they had only one on display. Our son turned to us and said, “There are two. The other one is over there.” He pointed to the second painting. He was correct.

Many MVCS parents were upset about the initial proposal to make intersession classes available based on a lottery because they specifically chose MVCS for the calendar and its valuable intersessions without any advance notice they could be at risk. Imagine choosing a school for its unique strong suits, only to be notified that one of the benefits was at risk all with just six weeks notice. We very much appreciated Principal Radomsky’s clarification about the plans for the October intersession.

Referring to the intersessions as simply a means of providing child care shows that the Alexandria Times did not fully learn about the intersessions mission before writing the article.