The guidelines are set forth by the State of Illinois to include a total of 185 days. Of that total, 176 are required student attendance days. But also include:
5 emergency days
2 full days of Parent/Teacher Conferences
2 full days of teacher institute
5 half days for school improvement
170 regular school days
How are the options different?
When first semester ends is an issue for consideration. Ending the semester at winter break requires starting earlier in the year or removing days off in first semester. Typically, secondary teachers (particularly the high school) advocate for ending first semester at winter break. Parameters set forth on creating the calendar does not allow this clean semester break so the committee looked for the semester to end as close to winter break as feasible. Another option has been the use of a fall break in November. Historically, the calendar committee has come up with a couple options. For the 2017-2018 school year…
Can revisions be made to the proposed calendar?
Yes, the committee will look at the results and feedback from the survey. Based on that feedback, the committee may adjust the final calendar that will be presented to the school board on Monday, February 27th, 2017. The Board will review the recommendation and vote on final approval at that time.
Why is the first day and last day a full day?
The Illinois state legislature passed a law that requires the first and last day to be at least five hours. This eliminated having those days be one hour or a half-day. Consistent ending times for the first and last days of school are also helpful for families. With that in mind, the district made the decision for these days to be full days.
Why are parent teacher conferences scheduled in February and not at the end of the 3rd Quarter?
Parent/Teacher conferences were moved to give students ample opportunity to review goal setting, provide adequate time for students who may require interventions before the end of the school year, and to give parents/guardians information on student progress earlier. (Please note that parent teacher conference format for elementary, middle school, and high school will remain the same as in previous years.)
How is the number of half-days for school improvement determined?
The district has had five half-days designated for school improvement in previous years. The proposed calendar again has five half-days, which will allow time for both grade level/subject meetings, and time to work on district initiatives. The days are spaced on the calendar so as to reduce interruptions and remain on Wednesdays, which is the normal early release day.
What are other districts doing?
As possible, efforts have been made to coordinate to the calendar of neighboring districts. The different calendars regional districts use make this coordination difficult.