Public input on school calendar options sought (Nov. 15, 2013)
Next school year may start about a week earlier than last year if Rockdale County school board members approve the recommendation made Thursday night at their work session.
Before making the recommendation, Chief Academic Officer Leslie Demarco updated the board on the 2014-2015 school calendar proposal process. A committee came up with three options, which were presented to the school board at its Nov. 14 meeting. The school system then put the options on the district's Web site for public input.
Demarco's presentation showed that 71.4 percent of responders chose Option 1, which would set the first day of school at July 28.
Students would still be in school for the standard 180 days. The calendar included a 190-day schedule for teachers and included four week-long intercessions and a 10-day semester break in the winter. The last day of school would be May 22, the Friday before Memorial Day.
Much of the proposed calendar was similar to the current calendar, according to Demarco.
"If it is approved by you, then, of course, that would still be subject to modifications as might be deemed necessary through the budget review process," Demarco said.
School board members will vote on the recommendation at its next regular meeting later this month.
Later in the meeting, Superintendent Richard Autry addressed the one day students recently missed from this week's extreme cold weather.
Central Office staff is reviewing options for make up days, which could be a day during the Feb. 17-Feb. 21 break or the March 21 teacher work day, according to Autry. He said the make up day will not be a post planning day in May and he stressed the importance of students' instructional time.
He pointed out that there was 79 instructional days left in the semester, which included 40 days before the Georgia High School Graduation Test, 50 days before the Criterion-Referenced Competency Test, or CRCT, and 60 days before End of Course Tests.
"We do want to make this day up at a point in time in which we can gain benefit before any of these summited tests are administered," Autry said.
The second semester is shorter than the first semester.
"Yes, we have begun," Autry said of the second semester. "But there is precious little time for us to accomplish all we need to accomplish with regards to standards and mastery. And we don't have time to waste."