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Silent Lunch Hour in Elementary

12 years 7 months ago #138196 by FremontPTA
Our school has a silent lunch punishment. It is enforced if they do something wrong in class. They will have to have their entire lunch silent. I feel sorry for the older classes since they usually don't get recess and this is their only social time. I understand if they are screaming or something, but I have been their before and even the kids talking would make a silent lunch for everyone. We were talking about this subject at work tonight and said how upsetting school is anymore. NO TALKING AT LUNCH, LITTLE TO NO RECESS, SITTING STILL ALL DAY and then they wonder why these kids all have ADD or ADHD. A lot are labeled that because they are so needing to move and talk a bit. It would be totally stressful to me if I was their age.
12 years 7 months ago #138320 by jimmy ritlin
Replied by jimmy ritlin on topic RE: Silent Lunch Hour in Elementary
We had “silent lunches” in Third Grade, and these were given as punishment for talking and/or being disruptive during class. The teacher had made theses three-fold partitions of plywood, hinged so they would from a cubicle around your desk as you ate lunch. These were about 3 feet high, light blue in color, and formed a three-sided cube around you as you ate lunch. It was much like a study carol you'd find later at high school.

“Jim” the teacher would say, “you have a silent lunch.” I'd usually get these for talking in class or goofing off during project time. I frankly didn't mind and don't think they were much of a disciplinary tool. As every one had a “silent lunch” by about mid-November there the stigma or embarrassment wore off quickly, and watching Sesame Street was boring. While not traumatized for life, as an adult now I think it quite asinine, and would question the teacher's instructional methods.
12 years 7 months ago #138728 by DowMom
I am totally against silent lunch times. I have told my children "lunch time and recess times are when you talk to your friends, not during instruction time"... I began preaching that since kindergarten.

I also work for a school district (different one from where my kids attend)... I do all three lunch periods (1 hour 45 minutes a day). There definitely are days where I wish it was silent times but it would just be more hectic and cause more problems in class.

I hope you stand up against this. This is definitely not an appropriate thing.

12 years 7 months ago #138733 by Serendipity
Hi All!

For anyone with a problem in this matter as one poster noted this is not to be done as a PTO issue (because it is not) but as concerned parents.

What you should do first is contact your principal via email, phone call, or a visit to voice your concerns and see what he/she has to say about the policy they are enforcing or trying to enforce. This will also arm you with all the facts concerning their policy, how they are enforcing it and what the punishments are.

The next step is to contact the Superintendent and attend a Board of Ed meeting. There is power in numbers so get all concerned parents involved.
The squeaky wheel gets the oil and if enough parents speak out about the issue you can effect change. Parents complaining to each other changes nothing. You must voice the complaints to the people who are in a position to change things.

I had an unrelated issue with my one child's school. It was a policy that has been in place for a number of years now. I was shocked to find out that while many parents hated this policy for years no one in all this time went forward to address it and try to get it stopped. Myself and four other parents started to make a stink with the principal, Superintendent, & BOE and in a matter of days parts of the policy were immediately removed and the entire policy is currently under review to continue to be altered. So if you have an issue with a school policy you must bring it to light and you can effect change.
11 years 1 week ago #149421 by jimmy ritlin
Replied by jimmy ritlin on topic RE: Silent Lunch Hour in Elementary
I agree w/Seredipity that this is not a PTO issue. As an involved parent and advocate for your child it is worth making your voice heard.

Our school did have this issue come up in one of our PTG meetings, as part of the principal's report. We talked about it and decided to have the kids be part of the solution. Each classroom spent a little bit of time in their morning meeting coming up with ways to make the lunchroom less noisy. All the ideas were compiled and talked about in a school meeting. The principal came up with a community contract of sorts and incentive plans based on the kids input.
10 years 7 months ago #151076 by stjohnwife
My children's school took out after school detention and replaced it with silent lunches. too many of the parents were complainning that after school detentions were interfering with car pool.

My husband was hot when he heard this, and expressed his views which I know went in one ear and out the other.

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