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Author Topic: What's the best way to get a day off of work to attend an interview?  (Read 12201 times)
fizmath
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« on: April 11, 2012, 4:13:54 PM »

I've never had this concern before.  All other interviews were conducted while I was unemployed or on break.  This time I was given two choices, a Monday or a Wednesday.  That is to work around the schedules of the people who will be talking to me.  I try to stay quiet about looking for another job.  I hate to come out and say it.  I get weird vibes about this.  Other people have asked for a day off on rare occasions for family reasons and get dirty looks or are just flat out told no.  It is not so easy to just cancel classes and not show up since we are normally required to be on campus from 7 am until 5 pm.

I have to drive six hours to get there.  I will be driving back here immediately after the interview and should get home about midnight so classes on the next day shouldn't be a problem.

So, it looks like I have three options:
1) Humbly beg for permission for a day off and let it be known why.
2) Call in sick that day.
3) Tell the students myself not to show up on that day since I will be out of town and just hope that no one notices that I am gone.

My fear is that I don't get the job and then I am known as the unhappy camper who is looking to move on.  I have a good job now but this opportunity would be much better for numerous reasons.  I might add that I work at a community college with no tenure system.
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_touchedbyanoodle_
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« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2012, 4:18:58 PM »

Call in sick.
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weathered
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« Reply #2 on: April 11, 2012, 4:31:01 PM »

If you are skipping a class, show your students a good film. Give the dvd to a responsible student and ask him/her to show it to class while you are away and give some extra assignment.
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brixton
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« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2012, 4:33:41 PM »

It really depends upon how closely you're monitored.  For some schools, you can assign a project to the class for them to work on in class, and have someone -- a friend in the department, perhaps -- show up to moniter the students.  Sometimes you can beg off by asking for personal time off.  If you think these excuses will turn into a problem, calling in sick works, too.  (I always have a fear that I'll be pulling out of town after saying I'm sick, and at the last traffic light, I look over and see my secretary.  I just have no faith in my ability to lie, although if I was at a CC that required me to be there from 7-5 and I had an option to get out, I'd learn to lie!)

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baleful_regards
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« Reply #4 on: April 11, 2012, 4:37:32 PM »

In these situations, I try to stick as close to the truth....without revealing the truth.

Is there any way to state: "I have had something unexpected come up and must be away X date" to your admin?

Is there someone who could cover your class that you could offer in your stead?

I would prefer to state I had to be away and hold the line ( they can't exactly imprison you) and deal with the attitude rather than call in sick. Then again, I am weird like that and have zero ability to sell a lie.


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snowbound
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« Reply #5 on: April 11, 2012, 4:42:13 PM »

Call in sick.  If you don;t think you can pull it off, can you do something like have groups conferences on an upcoming assignement (scheduled at various times throughout the week) instead of a class that week?   
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zuzu_
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« Reply #6 on: April 11, 2012, 4:58:50 PM »

I would create some sort of alternate way to make up class time, either online or with conferences at different times throughout the week. Don't ask permission; just say that "I have an appointment and I'm going to be gone." Send an email the afternoon before.

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seniorscholar
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« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2012, 7:31:13 PM »

I always build two "snow days" into the syllabus, which lessens any guilt I might feel about not showing up. I would, however, give any class, large or small, an individualized library assignment (i.e., one that can be slightly different for each student) on the order of "go to the library, use the catalog to find fifteen books that would be likely to provide at least some information on ----- (this is what's different for each student), write down the call number for each, go to the stacks, find the books on the shelf, and create a correct bibliography entry for each book. Arrange it in alphabetical order, using correct Chicago bibliography form, and hand in a copy in class on Wednesday. Keep a copy for yourself, too, so you can refer to that in class."

Does this mean that I have to mark all these papers? No, on Wednesday I have a few people put one of their titles up on the board, or I use the document camera to show a piece of the page up, and call on other people in the class to point out any errors. Sometimes I -- or a student -- asks "why do you think it has the information you need?" and the victim thinks up a plausible reason.

If something about the paper makes me suspicious, I send someone to the computer to find the book in the library catalog (thus catching the person who didn't actually find it on the shelf because it's not in our library, or it's in remote storage or checked out, and therefore copied a bibliography from a published book). If someone is smart enough to say "Oh, I called it from remote storage" I ask "maybe not everyone knows about that. How did you do it? How long did it take to get to the [campus] library?" etc.

So, ok, this takes up two days of class, but I might well have done it even without needing to be out of town, since we haven't had snow this semester and even if there is an April storm, there will not be enough to cancel classes.

This is my all-purpose missing class exercise; it can be made easier or harder by adding/subtracting various parts; and it reinforces a useful skill, and it's fairly simple to make it hard for anyone to copy a friend's work or work in pairs.

The person in the undergraduate office who might be contacted if two or three students  show up looking for the professor is told "I'm assigning a library exercise on Monday, so if people come in looking for me you'll know why I'm not in the classroom." This is necessary only to make sure no one comes anxiously to the classroom to see if there's something wrong; and it's not even (really) a lie (though it's a deceptive statement, I'll admit). Otherwise, I haven't had to punch a time clock to register my attendance since my days of teaching high school.

And everyone except the extremely careless or the evident liars gets a + for "attendance and participation" for both Monday and Wednesday: many days (and many short pieces of written work) don't have a letter grade anyway.
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melba_frilkins
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« Reply #8 on: April 11, 2012, 7:47:38 PM »

 (I always have a fear that I'll be pulling out of town after saying I'm sick, and at the last traffic light, I look over and see my secretary. )



a. Make sure that your gas tank is full and other errands already attended to, so you won't have to get out of your car until you're 100+ miles away

b. Wear a hat.

No, I've never done this before.
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polly_mer
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Have you worked on that project today?


« Reply #9 on: April 11, 2012, 8:42:16 PM »

Are these classes due for an exam?  It's pretty common here for people to proctor each other's exams with no need for a major excuse.  "I have to be out of town that day" seems to work very well.
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larryc
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« Reply #10 on: April 12, 2012, 12:20:56 AM »

Oh fer chrissakes just call in sick that morning.
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bash217
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« Reply #11 on: April 12, 2012, 12:25:59 AM »

Oh fer chrissakes just call in sick that morning.

Yes.
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westcoastgirl
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« Reply #12 on: April 12, 2012, 1:02:27 AM »

I've done "remote quizzes" and I've also paid a graduate student (well, I'm one of those too, but I'm talking about other schools where I work) to monitor quizzes/tests. I didn't even know this was an option til one of the other adjuncts sent out an email asking for someone to monitor a test. I pay 25 bucks a class. I teach back to back, so they get 50 for passing out bluebooks and stuffing them in my mailbox.


ETA: Do you guys call in sick? I just use blackboard and mail the class, all at once. And then I offer an optional makeup session. Partly for ass-covering, partly because I really like my kids.
« Last Edit: April 12, 2012, 1:04:15 AM by westcoastgirl » Logged

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systeme_d_
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« Reply #13 on: April 12, 2012, 2:16:43 AM »

Fizmath: Call in sick.

Westcoastgirl: Different institutions have different policies. At the last place I worked, I just emailed my students on the very rare occasions when I had to cancel a class.  At my new job, the policy is to notify the chair and the department administrative assistant.  The administrative assistant posts class cancellation notices on classroom doors, and the chair likes to be kept in the loop.
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oldadjunct
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« Reply #14 on: April 12, 2012, 2:31:23 AM »

Fizmath: Call in sick.

Westcoastgirl: Different institutions have different policies. At the last place I worked, I just emailed my students on the very rare occasions when I had to cancel a class.  At my new job, the policy is to notify the chair and the department administrative assistant.  The administrative assistant posts class cancellation notices on classroom doors, and the chair likes to be kept in the loop.

This is how it is done here, I have no idea whether it is enforced (I have not missed more that one class in fourteen semesters).  But, I would just cancel class via email to students.  Even here.  Always easier to  ask for forgiveness, than permission.
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