Father defends family vacation to kids' school
A Philadelphia father is making headlines for taking his kids on a family vacation.
Radio personality Mike Rossi took his 9-year-old twins out of school for three days so they could watch him run in the Boston Marathon.
After they returned home, Rossi received a letter from the principal explaining family trips are not an excused absence, even though Rossi says it was also educational and he consulted with his children's teacher before the vacation about make up work.
Rossi posted the letter to his Facebook with a response, saying that his kids had a "once-in-a-lifetime" experience in which they learned more in those few days than they could in an entire school year.
"In the 3 days of school they missed ... they learned about dedication, commitment, love, perseverance, overcoming adversity, civic pride, patriotism, American history culinary arts and physical education... They watched their father overcome, injury, bad weather, the death of a loved one and many other obstacles to achieve an important personal goal... They also paid tribute to the victims of a senseless act of terrorism and learned that no matter what evil may occur, terrorists can not deter the American spirit."
Rossi says he wasn't scolded or shamed for taking his kids on the trip, nor is he 'taking on' the principal. He simply disagrees with the school district's policy.
He cleared this up, and a few other things, on Facebook, writing, "I am not angry, I don't have any beef with the school, teachers or principal. We did not ask for our kids to be 'excused'. We will take them out of class whenever we see fit. I did not make this viral. I don't like coconut. Thank you."
Some teachers who read Rossi's story on Yahoo! News actually responded in favor of the father.
One commenter said, "As a teacher I can appreciate both sides of the argument...As a father, when I have the chance to spend time with my wife and kids on a real adventure, guess what? See ya!!!!"
Another wrote, "There are many students that can miss classes, a few assignments, and tests and still succeed academically and career-wise!"
Rossi may get another chance to redeem himself with the school. He says he was invited to run the 2015 Bank of America Marathon in Chicago and asked, "Do I dare bring the kids?" I guess we'll see.