New Calendar For PE Schools

Published 4:57 pm Tuesday, March 12, 2013

PRINCE EDWARD -County school board members approved a new calendar for the coming year at the March 6 meeting that will factor a few tweaks from what was proposed in February.

A memo to the board in the board packet outlined that calendar input was received from student and staff advisory committees, staff and community surveys, and from posting the proposal on the website.

The newly approved calendar factors 180 student days, moving from a six-week to a nine-week grading period, sets a spring break from March 31-April 4, includes an Easter Monday Holiday April 21 (though it would be the last snow makeup day), ends school for children May 30, and sets graduation for May 31.

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Among the changes from an earlier draft discussed, not factoring January 2-3 as makeup days, which Division Superintendent Dr. David Smith noted parents had asked for, and providing students essentially a full two weeks off over the Christmas break. In the end, with makeup days rarely needed in the first semester, the board opted to leave January 2-3 in the approved calendar.

Dr. Smith explained that part of the rationale for spring break occurring earlier in April is that it better helps provide a mid-semester rest for everyone.

“The other consideration is that if spring break is two or three weeks later then it's very close to the start of SOLs and would provide a powerful interruption in instruction and preparation of students,” Dr. Smith detailed.

SOLs typically begin about the second week of May.

Most of the concerns about the Easter weekend were expressed by parents and families traveling out of the area for family get-togethers. Dr. Smith offered that it is “certainly an understandable request.”