Metro schools consider changing school calendar again - WBRC FOX6 News - Birmingham, AL

Metro schools consider changing school calendar again


School hasn't even started yet, but already there's talk of a change that could affect every family in Metro Nashville Public Schools as the district looks at different calendar options effective next year.

There are possibly two big changes the district will consider, including doing away with intersessions and adding more school days.

But that would cost money, and not everyone is on board with the idea.

Hunter's Lane High School teacher Melissa Brooks is already getting her classroom prepared for the first day of school, and she's eager to get her students back in their desks.

"The first thing I'm going to do is make my room welcoming," she said.

Year two of a balanced calendar is about to begin, and while Brooks had reservations initially, she said she loves the calendar now.

"The kids don't forget as much, especially since they don't have a lot to do in the summer. A lot of our kids can't work because they are not of age," Brooks said.

And while a balanced calendar appears to be here to stay, Metro schools is considering changes, including possibly adding more school days.

"Families really want some information as far ahead as they can get it. We've already had calls from parents asking about the calendar for 2014-15," said district spokeswoman Meredith Libbey.

Here are the three options for 2014-2015:

  • The first would be the same as this year, with 175 school days and intersessions in October and March followed by fall and spring breaks.
  • The second option is the same number of days but with no intersessions and a two-week fall and spring break.
  • The third option would add another five school days, eliminate the intersessions and have one week each for fall and spring break.

The district held a public meeting on Wednesday during which parents learned about the calendar options and offered feedback.

Parents like Paula Hurt don't want to see a big change.

"I liked the intersession. She signed up to do it and she loved it," she said.

Plus, adding extra days costs money. The district thinks it would cost about $21 million, which would be worked into the school budget.

Schools Director Dr. Jesse Register said he likes the longer school year option.

"We know that additional time is important. If you can add time to the school year - more time for students, more time for teachers - that leads to improvement. Ultimately, we support a longer calendar," Register said.

In addition to meeting Wednesday, the district will also be calling parents once school begins to get feedback about the calendar options.

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