Sleeping with the superintendent

It’s 6 a.m. and I’m in bed with the school superintendent.

It’s not as racy as it sounds. Technically, I’m just waiting for the superintendent to hop into bed with me.

The middle schooler’s alarm has already gone off. We’ve already received the news from the school closing scroll on the bottom of the television screen. My son’s attempting to go back to sleep, my husband is up and thinking about heading off to work. I lie in my warm bed, snuggled up to the cordless phone.

I can’t go back to sleep, not just yet. I’m waiting for the superintendent.

We usually get the call around 6:15 a.m. The snow day alert goes out first to high school homes, then middle school and so on until every schooling household in Grafton has been alerted to the lack of school. The first year, the call came in around 4:30 a.m. for my South Grafton student and I hit the roof — don’t call me that early unless someone is injured, or dead.

My eyes droop. I’m wrapped in blankets, have commandeered my husband’s pillow. I’m not a morning person. I can easily sleep until 8 a.m. and, today, there’s really no need for me to be awake this early.

I squint at the clock. 6:11. Any minute now. I can’t go back to sleep yet. The phone’s going to go off soon. I think about turning on the light and reaching for the British mystery I’d been reading the night before, but the nightstand is too far away. I think of pubs and tea and handsome upper crust New Scotland Yard detectives and their blunt lower rank sergeants and slowly start to drift…


The phone on my pillow has sprung to brightly lit life. Half-asleep, I fumble.

“This is Superintendent Connors…”

I barely listen. I already know what he has to say. I push the phone out of bed and attempt to get back to the dream. Weren’t we getting close to solving the crime?

My daughter, woken by the phone’s chirp despite my efforts, comes running into the room.

“There’s no school today!”

I guess I’m up.


16 thoughts on “Sleeping with the superintendent

  1. Good morning Jenn. I had a similar situation this morning. Shortly after the call came my 3rd grader was standing next to my bed, staring me in the face…”Dad, do we have school today?” “No you don’t”…”Great, can I go down stairs and play on the computer?” “No, go back to bed.”

    Now, mind you, this is the same kid who, for the last three days in a row, has missed the bus because he can’t drag his tiny butt out of bed in the morning. Yet, today at 6:30 AM, and a snow day, he’s wide awake and ready to play. Go figure.

    Well, needless to say, within minutes his older brother was awake and the two of them were arguing over computer rights. I knew that it would be only a few minutes before their fighting would wake my darling bride from her slumber, and all hell would break loose.

    So…I did what I thought was best…I got up and went to work. (You need to realize that, for a guy, showering, shaving, getting dressed and heading out the door is a 15 minute ordeal).

    I’ll be thinking of all of you mom’s home with the kids today…Ha ha ha 🙂

  2. I have two students in the high school and we got four (4) calls this morning from the Superintendent. Guess it is belt and suspenders day!

  3. So now the kids are getting out on June 24th?

    We’re getting so close to having 4th of July celebrations at school this year.

  4. We’ve had 4. Two are built in so by my count we are getting out on the 25th right now. We can only have 4 more before they start taking away vacation days.


  5. I think 2 vacations are too much. I’m all for combining the Feb & April and having just 1 week in March.

    But that will never happen

  6. Mom of 3, I completely agree with you!! They don’t need a week in Feb with all the long weekends and snow days!

  7. Grafton did try eliminating a vacation week quite a few years ago. As I recall, Feb and April were combined into one week off in March back in the late 70s or early 80s. The town took the five extra days and gave several long three-day weekends. I am not sure if this lasted one year or two, but it was discontinued. One reason was that parents were still taking their kids out of school for vacation in Feb and April in spite of the fact that those were not vacation weeks. Plus, with the long weekends, school was not getting out any earlier in June.

  8. well that sort of defeats the purpose, giving out long weekend…

    i guess it’s just a change we can’t believe in.

    we are creatures of habit & resist change at any turn

  9. March it is! But, if the conversation is limited to the GG blog, then you are right – change will not happen. Who wants to take it to the school committee and find out the process for getting this done? Now would be the time, since the teacher’s contract is only a two year deal – we’ll be re-negotiating before you know it and my guess is that this would figure into that.

  10. ya but how much will it cost the town? nothing gets done in a union contract w/out $omething in return.

  11. One solution to not have to wait for “the call” is to change the number to which “the call” comes to.

    I was so upset by that 5 am call a few years back that I called the Superintendant’s office and had it changed to my cell phone and made sure they deleted my home number.

    No more waking the house up at 6:15 am – My phone is usually on silent anyway – so the call comes in – they leave a message – and everyone gets to sleep a little bit longer.

    I hope that helps!

  12. The school committee discussed the calendar at this week’s meeting. This next school year’s calendar was decided upon. They gave it a lot of thought and there was much discussion about changing things in the future with regard to start dates, end dates and timing of vacations. I love this blog and love hearing comments from fellow citizens as well as Jenn’s news and editorials. I have always wished that there was an official informative site or source for local government news aside from local access cable and The Grafton News. While both of these are worthwhile sources, I wished for a summary of discussions and votes. I know, I know..these are called minutes and are available to me as public record. So far, this blog has served that purpose for me. I am curious, Mary Ann if your comments and blog entry are written in an official capacity or not? I know that the SC decides on and votes a calendar each year so that must not be tied to the contract. My understanding is- the teachers are only held to the number of days and not WHICH days. My suggestion to anyone with an opinion or suggestion regarding our school district is to contact a school committee member or ATTEND A MEETING! Some of the SC members are very open to communicate with citizens. They have email addresses available on the district website.
    As far as the calendar, there is no way to please everyone but if you do want your opinion heard they will listen to it and take it into consideration. I know this from experience.

  13. Thanks for the input. I just might go now. (although I wish I knew before they decided the calendar)

    So what did they decide for a calendar? Same as this year or were there any chgs?

    Thanks for the info.

  14. Do we know for sure that the school will start taking away vacation days after 8 snow days (as ‘Night Nurse’ posted)? I’ve heard recently that 5 is the limit before we start losing vacation days.

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