Recess consultant would cost Travis school district $47,900

By From page A4 | May 12, 2014

FAIRFIELD — A $47,900 contract with Oakland-based Playworks that includes “recess implementation training,” “consultative visits,” and a “coordinated recess system that helps shift the entire school culture” goes before Travis School District trustees on Tuesday – with an option for additional $2,000-a day-consulting,  plus travel costs.

Consultant visits include recess observations, modeling of games with students and a playground assessment.

The contract pays $30,000 for 20 consultant visits.

Playworks is a nonprofit public benefit corporation operated for charitable purposes, according to the agreement before trustees. The Bay Area nonprofit recommends that school administration participate in workshops that include seasonal games along with “tips and tricks.”

Participation in workshops will help “sustain methodology longterm,” according to the agreement.

Putting the program in place includes designating a parent or staff member at each elementary school as “recess coach.” The school district as part of the agreement agrees to participating in data collection with surveys of students, teachers and others.

Playworks maintains confidentiality of all student data, the agreement states.

Travis trustees meet Tuesday at 6 p.m. at the Travis Education Center, 2775 De Ronde Drive in Fairfield.

Reach Ryan McCarthy at 427-6935 or [email protected]

Ryan McCarthy


Discussion | 15 comments

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  • money well spentMay 11, 2014 - 10:07 pm

    When I was a child the teacher opened the door and we played in the school yard until the bell rang. These days, we are told that we have to pay our unionized highly qualified teachers and school administrators so much because they are so much better. Really? $50k to teach them how to conduct recess. I wonder what we could get for $100k, a consultant to tell them how our kids eat lunch.

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  • GemmaMay 12, 2014 - 6:54 am

    @Money, I'm LMAO at your comment, which is a welcome relief from the disgust I felt when I read the article. Seriously? Recess Consultant? GTFOH. I went to Jr High in 87, and I still remember my recesses before that. So many options. 2 slides, swing set, merry go round, grass, monkey bars, group of girls playing a game, and the teachers sitting on the edge of the grass/sidewalk wearing their whistles around their necks. This is ludicrous. Does Travis have money burning a hole in their pocket or what?

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  • GemmaMay 12, 2014 - 7:01 am

    Google Recess Consultant, and click on the link 3 posts down. It's a Craigslist ad for a recess consultant, and it lists what their job entails. It should be called "Helicopter Non Parent or Busy Body. Basically they're going to hover over the kids at recess, plan the recess activities, ensure the kids participate and enjoy the activity, and make sure they enjoy their lunch?!?!?! Sounds to me like constant hovering, and not enjoyable for the kids at all. Requirements are HS Diploma or GED minimum. http://sfbay.craigslist.org/sfc/edu/4427515158.html

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  • GemmaMay 12, 2014 - 7:03 am

    Google Recess Consultant. The third link is a Craigslist ad for a Recess Consultant. You can read about the "job", which requires a HS Diploma or GED, so you can plan the kids recess, hover over them during recess and lunch, and somehow make them enjoy their lunch. I don't know when the kids get to breathe, or where schools are coming up with this money. Wouldn't the money be better spent in the classrooms, or paying the teachers, and leave recess to the kids, like it's always been?

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  • Tax PayerMay 12, 2014 - 6:20 am

    yep, government working at it's best. Maybe we can get a consultant on how to teach us to go the bathroom also. As all of this is all BS anyway.

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  • The MisterMay 12, 2014 - 6:36 am

    Maybe they could hire a consultant to help them hire consultants.

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  • FDCMay 12, 2014 - 6:56 am

    NO! Please remember this sort of waste when these clowns try to force a parcel tax or some other way of extorting money from homeowners on the ballot. Vote NO and make these profligates stop blowing our money away on silly ideas.

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  • Salty DogMay 12, 2014 - 7:31 am

    Remember this is all about political correctness and government control

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  • BMay 12, 2014 - 8:16 am

    A recess consultant? My god.... Let them outside to play, make sure they dont injure themselves or fight. Its not rocket science people!

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  • patrickMay 12, 2014 - 1:50 pm


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  • Dexter Fowler (recess expert)May 12, 2014 - 2:01 pm

    And in a couple months that want to raise taxes because there is no money. And the sheeple will vote for it just like they did in Fairfield! I am just jealous I didnt come up with the idea of a recess consultation business to fleece schools out of money!

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  • MarkMay 12, 2014 - 2:51 pm

    You know as a society we've failed when we have to hire expensive consultants to help our kids play at recess. Did anyone ask the kids if they need someone to tell them how to play at recess? Or does that take another expensive money-wasting consultant to perform a study? $2,000 a day + travel costs? where do I sign up?

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  • Ms. TMay 12, 2014 - 8:02 pm

    Clearly there is more to this than the comments below or the article itself reflects. This could be required as a result of injuries to students; it could be the result of contract challenges over who supervises recesses; it could be the result of serious problems that this article does not describe. No, I don't work for TUSD, but I am a retired school administrator, and there is always more than meets the eye when it comes to running public K-12 schools.

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  • Tax PayerMay 13, 2014 - 7:57 am

    yep, Mrs T, you said it all, a former school administrator would look deeper in how they can spend our tax dollars. I am glad you are now retired!

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  • General Fadi BasemMay 12, 2014 - 8:12 pm

    Here I am sitting at today's staff meeting and this article pops up on the screen. It's not surprising that the Superintendent of any school today needs help with something as complicated as recess. After all, the Solano Community College Bored decided to agree to pay their President $250,000+ in salary, AND then they decided to provide him with a limousine to ferry his imperial backside around to reign over the extended parts of the SCC Empire. Now why would somebody tasked with multi-million-dollar budgets at Solano County's premier educational establishment require a personal car provided at taxpayer expense? Isn't $250,000 salary enough pay to be able to afford YOUR OWN DARN CAR? So it does not surprise me to see that supervisors at a local school district would think that a recess consultant is a good way to spend $47.9k. As usual, the General has a suggestion for a way for the taxpayers to save some money. General Fadi Basem and his staff will be willing to provide a recess study for the bargain basement price of only $47,899.95. BUT WAIT THERE'S MORE!! If you accept this generous offer before 8pm I will include a copy of my book "Everything you wanted to know about Recess". Just hurry over to the nearest wire transfer location and wire your $47,899.95 to.......

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