Workload committee finishes analyzing data, begins proposal process at meeting

The workload study committee finished analyzing the data from the workload study and began formulating proposals at its meeting March 13. The proposals will draw from the over 60-page report on the findings from the study and outlining recommendations for the administration to pursue, Head of School Jeanne Huybrechts said.

The committee, led by upper school science teacher David Hinden and middle school Dean of Faculty and Latin teacher Moss Pike, has met every other week since January. The committee met six times and plans to meet at least three more times. The committee, consisting of students, parents, deans, teachers and other administrators, will be joined by Huybrechts as proposals for recommendations start to be constructed.

Once the committee has a recommendation to make, it will be presented to the joint Faculty Academic Committee, which consists of the heads of each department of the upper and middle schools. Joint FAC will accept, modify or deny the proposal. If they do not deny the proposal, it will be shown to Huybrechts and President Rick Commons, who will accept or reject it.

“It’s likely that any proposal from the workload committee would be given very, very careful consideration by the Faculty Academic Committee,” Huybrechts said. “It’s very, very rare that a FAC proposal is not accepted by senior administration.”

Joint FAC hopes to finalize recommendations by May.

“Our plan right now isn’t to create a laundry list of recommendations, but rather to offer a few high-level suggestinos for addressing some of the issues we’ve identified,” Pike said.

The recommendations hope to address how to reapportion time to better serve students, whether there should be limits on what students can do at school and ways to use more time for community building, Huybrechts said.

“Is the school year length long enough to do everything that we want to do?” Huybrechts said. “Are there other ways that we could modify the length of the school year? Are breaks inserted at the right times? So, maximizing the use of the time we have to serve our students, that’s a very, very big theme.”

Huybrechts noted that, as a result of this workload study, the school hopes to create a body dedicated to assessing student workload each year.

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