However, sometimes postponements can be larger. For example, we have an unexpected week away from school due to a winter storm that just won't stop, and we may have more on the way. I can miss days, knowing that we'll make them up at the end of the year, but this is the first time we have faced Alternative Methods of Instruction, or AMI. Somebody, or a group of somebodies, decided they didn't want to make up school days past Memorial Day, which apparently is a tragedy of the most tragic of tragedies. It was not my understanding that we would use AMI for weather cancellations, but that we valued in-person instruction too much to do so. I liked that opinion.
To consider that completing assignments online is anything close to equal to in-person instruction is opposed to that opinion. I haven't seen or heard anything from teachers that the AMI plan is being received in a positive light. At least I am not alone. What I have seen from parents is frustration about not being able to access material and assignments.
As much as we practice logging in to Google and Google Classroom (a horrible platform, by the way), it's amazing how many students lose the ability to do so when they're at home, even after logging in daily in class. They know their usernames. They know their passwords. Why is it so difficult away from school?
What happens on AMI days seems to be that I am no longer a teacher (which is what my contract says that I am), but that I am some type of a technology manager. Could I claim breach of contract? Probably not. I want to teach, and I don't care if I have to come back after Memorial Day. I want to interact with my students, fac-to-face, not communicate with people from behind a keyboard. Have I mentioned that I don't like talking into a telephone, let alone across a video link? For that matter, I don't even make lunch orders by talking into a clown's mouth. AMI does not play to my strengths.
I can be flexible, but in this case AMI is not the way to keep me effective. More AMI days will continue to do more of the same. I predict that attendance on these days will be a mess of red tape as we try to juggle which students did the work and which will claim that they didn't know anything about it. In attempt to make it easier, I have already uploaded work for next week. If we are out of school, everything is to be completed online, and there will be no need to bring in paper answers.