The Washington Times-Herald

Local News

November 19, 2013

Washington to move to balanced calendar

The Washington School Board voted Monday to accept a balanced calendar for the next two years.

The 5-1 vote will move summer vacation from three months to two but will give more free time during the school year. Superintendent Daniel Roach said the calendar was "a combination of two different approaches."

According to the information provided by the school, teachers start preparations on Aug. 1 and students will start school on Aug. 4. There will be a week for fall break, on Oct. 13 to 17. This year, there were three school days used for the break.

On March 23, there will be the start of make-up days for snow cancellations. If they are not used, the days turn into extra spring break days. A full week of spring break will be March 23 to 27.

The last day of school is slated for May 22 and graduation will be May 23, but if more than five snow days are used during the year, students including graduated seniors, will have to return to school starting May 26.

The 2015-16 calendar is very similar, with the same makeup of vacation days. Washington Community is one of the first school systems in the area to move to a balanced calendar.

Roach said about 275 people participated in a survey on the school's website and a majority of people, including parents and taxpayers, were in favor of the new calendar.

"It was a significant number," Roach said.

Board member Jay Armes was the lone dissenting vote. During discussion, he expressed reservations about the calendar because of agricultural concerns and tourism. Board member Steve Bouchie was absent.

School Grades

Although they will not be publicly released until next month, Washington discussed their A to F school grades.

Assistant Superintendent Paul White told the board the schools are improving.

"We had a pretty good year," White said. "We improved across the board."

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