Let's face it. The Planner System is dead:
Let's all face it, beyond the teacher's filter, beyond what the school expects you to say concerning this issue, beyond professionalism, there is no reason to keep the Planner System in the state of what it is at the moment. As of now, the planner system stands as a relic of the past, not only a drain on resources, but a waste of time, waste of money - a system that has so far stood the test of time, but awaits its soon inevitable demise.
We live in the 21st Century. A message can be sent across the world in the blink of the eye; we communicate with each other on small illuminated screens; we read books on our phones, and yet, still this confused collection of scrappy paper exists as a pain in everyone's arses. We need to get real here. If the technology is here, we should strive to try our best to utilize it; and save the however-many trees were sacrificed for the making of a collection of rarely-used planners that find their way into the recycling.
If teachers wish for a method of direct communication with parents, that's alright with me. The only issue is that the planner epic-ly fails at this (among many other things). Teachers nowadays don't use planners to communicate with parents because of the constraints that the planner sets them. The planner forces teachers to limit the amount of space of which they are to write whatever they wish in, while assuming that a child **that obviously wishes of whatever the matter is to remain undisclosed** will show be gullible enough to show their parents in a feat of true stupidity. It's time to get real. Teachers (who aren't gullible, or are simply incredibly lazy) have long known of this, and have hence utilized e-mail. With e-mail, you are guaranteed that the parent receives whatever information is required, regardless of how ashamed the child is of whatever he has committed, and it is received in the blink of an eye with exactly what you want written within it - no constraints, or any other issues. No handwriting issues either (I'm looking at the teachers with near-illegible handwriting).The argument there will be no feasible alternative should therefore be taken with a pinch of salt.
Neither is the planner a good method of taking down homework. The main concern here again is the size constraint. Of course, various members of the audience would point out: why not get a bigger planner? But the obvious criticism here is that it's not the case that such a large space is always needed here. Again, e-mail is the key answer here. E-mail has little to no constraints. It's faster, all your students are guaranteed the required information and it requires the pain of only one rather the pain of the many (including that one person). There is not constraint on size - you can even add bold, italic or underline here, and there's no time wasted at the end of the lesson copying homework - precious time that could be learning time. The other key argument here about planners is that they help your future organisation skills. IN WHAT WAY DOES WRITING IN A PLANNER HELP YOUR ORGANISATION SKILLS. On first glance, it may sound like an absurd thing to say, but upon closer inspection, it's easy to see why this statement epitomizes the planner system as a whole. Planners were designed for people from a different era. Technology has changed. And hence, those who bother to write things in their planners, often rely on social media such as WhatsApp or Messenger due to the constraints of size to write (and consequently, detail), and time allotted to copy down the homework. Hence it isn't a planner that teachers should be striving, but rather a good work ethic - a piece of paper doesn't develop organisation skills, school does.
Any teacher, who you class as 'good' (with the notable exception of a certain teacher who's name shall remain vaguely anonymous for the sake on sincerity) has already utilized 21st century technology such as e-mail to send their homework; it actually saves teachers effort in the long run - less students complaining of homework-related issues and those that were absent can catch up on work. What is the point in a planner if some students have to e-mail the teacher querying the homework? Can't the teacher just send it out to everyone? It wouldn't cause any harm doing so, that's for sure, or require any extra effort.
In fact, teachers are already required (in Tiffin) as part of their jobs to send homework electronically. This makes the planner completely redundant.
Finally, we come to the most hysterically ridiculous part of the planner system. Signing your planner. The concept that signing (often blank pages) will aid you and your parents as to your homework. Perhaps there is some alternate reality I am unaware of but as far as I'm concerned and aware, signing a planner is simply a matter of a quick forgery before Tutor Time. If this is the sole reason, a sort of "pretend communication" between the form tutor and the parent that is supposed to exist within a single forged signature is absurd. Signing a planner is completely worthless even if a parent were to sign it as all that would be found would be homework. Homework! Alas, the homework that teachers are supposed to send electronically as part of their jobs. How can a single signature affect a student's academic progress? This is not a misrepresentation of the situation - this is the reality of the situation beyond the alternate reality which teachers play along to.
This isn't a matter of keeping "tradition" or the what-not. It's a matter of, without a teacher's filter, without justifying something which they know is unjustifiable, of discussing rationally a replacement for the outdated relic/drain of resources we call 'planners.' Rather than wait for planner's gradual demise, can't we pull the plug on planners right now.
The Planner System was destined to fail in the 21st century. We have to necessary tools; let's utilize them.