2 calendars up for debate at School Board meeting tonight

INDIAN RIVER COUNTY – Regardless of which school calendar is approved tonight, students are nearly guaranteed that their first day of school next school year will start on Aug. 23. However, Summer vacation could come a couple days sooner – or later – depending on the calendar.

The Indian River County School Board is expected to choose between a calendar proposed by the Calendar Committee and a calendar the Superintendent’s Leadership Council has crafted. Superintendent Dr. Harry La Cava is recommending approval of his council’s calendar and rejection of the calendar committee’s calendar.

Both calendars have the same start date, have six teacher work days, FCATs before Spring break and an emergency day scheduled in the second semester.

From there, the calendars diverge.

The Superintendent’s Leadership Council calendar has uneven semesters – 83-day first semester, 97-day second semester and allows students to take their exams prior to Winter break.

By comparison, the Calendar Committee’s calendar has even semesters and schedules exams for after Winter break.

A school board meeting in early December drew a standing-room only sized crowd of parents and students who wanted it known they did not want school to start earlier than Aug. 23.

At the time, the school district was considering asking the Florida Department of Education for a waiver to allow school to start as early as Aug. 9.

Neither the Calendar Committee nor the Superintendent’s Leadership Council calendars reflect the proposed early start.

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What the calendars have going for – and against – them

Calendar Committee

Pros

Has an emergency day 1st semester-day before Thanksgiving

Has equal semesters

Students are not in school on Election Day

Gives students & teachers 10 days winter break

Cons

Does not allow students to take exams before winter break

School year ends later-June 8

Does not have a workday when returning from winter break

Loss of 4/5 instructional days due to testing

 

Superintendent’s Leadership Council

Pros

Workdays are spread out during the year

Allows students to take exams before winter

Gives students & teachers 9 days winter break with a workday for teachers the first day back (10 days for teachers without students)

School year ends 2 days earlier than the other proposal-June 6

Pick up extra days before FCAT testing during the 2nd semester for grades 3-11

Dual enrollment classes end before Winter Break

Cons

Has unequal semesters (83 & 97)

Does not have emergency day 1st semester break

Students are in school on election day

Marking periods are no longer uniform

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