At my workplace, students put in their six school hours between 8:00 and 2:00. The professional day is typically an hour either side of the student time slot, with some flexibility. If'n ya arrive at 7:00, stay until 3:00. 6:30-2:30. 7:30-3:30. Most of us arrive at 7:00 and are easily hanging around until 4:00 or 5:00...and when we do walk out the door we do so with a pile of work to do during the evening.
There are bosses in our district who walk around with clipboards, marking who's there and who's gone and what time it is. But not mine. He makes time to chat with us before the school year begins, when we're there just because we want to be. He sees us at our desks in July. He notices the uptick in August as we're beginning to fill the building at odd hours. He sees us at work until 8 PM during workshop week. And he doesn't nitpick about 7-3:00. He knows we'll put in more hours than he could ever pay us for. And, he knows we'll ONLY put in 7-3:00 if he brings out the clipboard.
He believes that life has first priority, work has second, and so encourages us to go home...and by doing so gives us choice. We typically choose to put in extra hours because we know we don't have to.
I've put in a ton of time since this whole job switch came around, so on Thursday I exercised my ability to choose. It was a beautiful, sunny, 80-degree afternoon. I rode down the streets away from work at 2:15. Because I could.
The parade? Just me, my bicycle and the streamers flapping on my backpack.
AND my blinkie lights.
- The waaaay happy Old Bag