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  • Eric Schneider

Lean Test 101: Flexible Start/End Times for Staff in Pine Island (MN)

It’s the goal of all of Pine Island's Project Ignite workshop ideas to move into a “test” phase, and this week Superintendent Tammy Champa was happy to announce the test phase of the #1 voted idea: Flexible Start and End Times, submitted by staff member Michael Goodwin.

Here was Goodwin's idea: "According to the Pine Island master agreement, all teachers must work an 8-hour day. The specific times have always been posted in the employee handbook from 7:45am-3:45pm. Could we try looking at this differently?"


After taking Goodwin's idea through the Design Thinking workshop, district leaders

announced the launch of a lean test of the prototype:


"If you would like to continue with your typical 7:45am-3:45pm schedule, there’s nothing for you to do. No changes at all. If you would like to participate, please read the following..."


March 2 - April 24 (TEST WINDOW)

No later than the Sunday evening prior to the upcoming week, please post your schedule outside of your door. Sample schedule may look like the following:


Schedule for Mr. Fred Jones

Week of March 2, 2020

Monday: 7:15am-3:15pm

Tuesday: 7:30am-3:30pm

Wednesday: 7:15am-3:15pm

Thursday: 7:45am-3:45pm

Friday: 7:15am-3:15pm


The following Q/A section will hopefully help answer any questions that staff members might have.


Q: Why the requirement of posting a schedule if we would like to take advantage of the alternate schedule opportunity?

A: A lot of time was spent on how this would be monitored, kept track of, etc…. After a lengthy conversation, and the design thinking of who would need to know your schedule, this seemed like a simple process to inform students, parents, and colleagues of your hours for the week.


Q: What, if on Wednesday, I discover that I need to leave early on Thursday and I would like to change my schedule? Is this a possibility?

A: All alternative schedules must be posted by Sunday night. Changes to the schedule mid-week would be treated as they have with the need to use PTO.


Q: Do I have the ability to post a schedule similar to the following:

Monday 7:45am-3:15pm

Tuesday 7:15am3:45pm

A: No, the contract language states 8 hour days so all schedule adjustments must be reflected in the single day. There is not the ability to work a 7 hour day on one day followed by a 9 hour day, etc…


Q: What if there’s a meeting scheduled by the building administrator?

A: All scheduled meetings must be attended. Please consider upcoming meetings when determining your schedule.


Q: How does this impact our current “last day of the week” language?

A: All existing language in the contract continues to be in place for the duration of the c


Remember, this is a test window for a project ignite idea. It’s not expected to be perfect, but will serve as a great opportunity to determine possible structures, approaches in the future. Following the test window, a survey will be sent to all licensed staff for your reflection.