The school calendar for the coming school year is being revised. The starting date for students has been moved back one week from August 19th to August 26th. The 2 professional development days originally scheduled in September and the 2 professional development days originally scheduled in February have been changed to student days. There is one less student day in the revised calendar than in the original calendar.
The change in the district calendar will allow the district more time to prepare for the coming school year. Due to the Coronavirus pandemic, we do not know what our school year is going to look like. Therefore we need to be flexible and plan for multiple scenarios.
We are preparing 3 scenarios for next year. The first is a normal return to school for all staff and students without social distancing. The second is a full online/remote-learning scenario. The third is a combination of these two scenarios in which approximately half of the students attend on alternating days to allow for social distancing. In this scenario, on days in which students are not attending school, students will be provided remote learning activities. In order to adapt to changes due to the pandemic, we have to be prepared to move from one scenario to the other during the school year.
For this reason, we are working to move as much curriculum as possible to an online format. This will give us the flexibility to move between all three scenarios with the least amount of disruption to student learning. Elementary students will be issued chromebooks for next school year to facilitate the online learning.
By moving all of the professional development days to the beginning of the calendar, staff will have the time to prepare for the variety of school scenarios described above. Currently, the State has not come out with final guidance on the opening of schools for next year. Therefore, all preparations for next year have to be done in August, before students return. For these reasons, we are making a change to the district calendar.
In order to approve a revised calendar, we need to hold a public hearing. The hearing will be held Tuesday, June 23rd at 4:30 pm at 111 S. Broad St. during the public participation portion of the Board of Education meeting. The revised district calendar for the 2020-2021 school year is attached.