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Friday’s Calendar Confusion

Malia Savella | msavella19@dtechhs.org | September 18, 2018

On September 14th, d.tech fell into mayhem because of a simple calendar error. Because the Friday was briefly marked as a teacher work day, students did not receive their hot lunches, were locked out, and even missed school.

Though the exact date is unknown, the mistake is thought to have been made this spring, while the fall calendar was in full review. Director of Intersession Wendy Little recalls that “last spring, we had multiple versions of calendars, which we do every spring… there’s usually like four versions of the next year calendar that all staff have access to. And at some point, I don’t know when, there was a link somewhere on the calendar that had one of the versions that was not like the approved version”. The error was short-lived, and a correction on the calendar was coupled with a d.tech download update urging d.tech families to treat the 14th as a regular school day. However, this edit did not go through the school’s hot lunch program.

Foodies is also synced up with the calendar system, and doesn’t send student lunches to d.tech on teacher work days. Sophomore Marita Managadze, who often delivers hot lunch, ended up managing a “mass panic pandemonium” when 90 percent of student lunches weren’t there to deliver. “In school, it got registered [that Friday was] a vacation day, and [Foodies] didn’t send the lunches that students thought they had ordered, but actually didn’t order”, she says. Some students were fastened hot dogs leftover from the barbeque. Others, like senior Troy Springett, didn’t have a real solution. “I lived on nectarines [but] I didn’t get any hot lunch food”, he says.

Some families planned ahead for their children’s supposed day off. One such student, senior Agathe Vasseur, was nearly absent over the mishap. “So my mom, for the whole entire week, was saying that we didn’t have school on Friday, because she had put in all the dates in for the calendar… and then [Friday] morning was like, ‘oh, just kidding’,” she says, all of which caused her to rush to school that day. While there were some family scheduling issues, most complaints came from an unfulfilled free day. Little said: “There were a couple families that have said, ‘oh, I made a doctor’s appointment for like, the afternoon or the morning’, we said doctor’s appointments are excused absences… I think more it was like some students heard there was a day off… like, ‘they told us there was going to be a day off and now there’s not!’”.

The calendar error also resulted in a faulty badge system. Director of Business Operations & Facilities Hanan Holloway explained that “[student] badges open the doors only on school days; they don’t work on weekends, they don’t work after 5, I think… staff badges work 24 hours a day… [Paul Cerra] got ahold of the wrong calendar also, and coded it as a school holiday”. Because student are not expected to badge in on a teacher work day, the side entrances were inaccessible, leading students to assume they were purposefully locked out. Even when students got inside through the front entrance, several doors leading outside would set off the alarm if students passed through them.

The d.tech calendar is prepared months in advance because of its importance; it governs d.tech’s attendance, student lunches, and much more. With so much community reliance on the calendar, this is mistake that staff are working to ensure will not happen in the future.

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