MoCo Board of Education Votes Unanimously to Edit Calendar
Per the Board documents from today’s Board of Education Meeting (Innovative calendar is for Nix and Arcola elementary schools):
During the Opening Schools in Recovery of Education presentation to the Board of Education at its meeting on August 25, 2020, staff analyzed the approved Traditional and Innovative School Year calendars for School Year 2020–2021.
This review indicated that the Traditional School Year 2020–2021 Calendar as approved aligned with the virtual instructional model for the first marking period.
On August 25, 2020, the Board approved an adjustment to the Innovative School Year 2020–2021 Calendar to align the marking periods for the remainder of the school year with the Traditional School Year Calendar (Resolution No. 402-20).
At that time, we indicated that staff would continue to review the calendars to determine if adjustments would be needed for the second marking period.
This incremental approach to planning the instructional calendar is necessary in this school year due to the continually changing dynamics related to the public health conditions and in the guidance from the federal, state, and local governments that impact public school instruction and operations.
Our review of the second quarter highlighted the following:
• Early Release Days: The customary practice has been to schedule two early release days
aligned with Veterans Day for parent/teacher conferences. In the approved Traditional School Year 2020–2021 Calendar, these early release days are November 11 and 12, 2020. In the virtual model, however, frequent early release days cause disruptions in course and curriculum scheduling, particularly at the secondary level. There is an opportunity to shift the two early release days for conferences to the week of Thanksgiving, on November 23 and 24, 2020. This week already is modified and abbreviated; staff is working with school leadership teams to develop guidance on structuring the time. Shifting the early release days provides additional weeks in the second marking period without interrupted instructional schedules and maintains the flexibility to schedule parent/teacher conferences.
Members of the Board of Education 2 October 6, 2020
• Professional Development: We continue to hear from staff that more time is needed for professional development and planning. There is an opportunity to add a Professional Day on November 4, 2020, creating a brief break in combination with November 3, 2020, a holiday aligned with Election Day. This change would result in a total of 181 approved instructional days in the school year, which is one day more than the state required minimum of 180 instructional days. The approved calendar continues to identify make-up days in the third and fourth marking periods if they ultimately are needed to meet the state required minimum number of instructional days.
The Innovative School Year Calendar for School Year 2020–2021 also will need to be amended to reflect the addition of the Professional Day on November 4, 2020. Due to the structure of the existing early release and conference days already established in the Innovative School Year 2020–2021 Calendar, the innovative elementary schools did not see the need to realign the early release days.
I recommend that the Board of Education approve the following resolution:
WHEREAS, On August 6, 2020, the Board of Education approved the reopening of the 2020–2021 school year as a virtual-only instructional model through the first semester or until state and local health officials determine that students safely can return to in-person instruction after the first semester (Resolution No. 386-20); and
WHEREAS, The approved Traditional 2020–2021 School Year Calendar aligns to the instructional model through the first marking period, and on August 25, 2020, the Board of Education approved an amended Innovative School Year Calendar for School Year 2020–2021, to align the marking periods with the Traditional School Year Calendar; and
WHEREAS, Staff reviewed both the Traditional and Innovative School Year calendars to ensure that the instructional calendars continue to align with and support the virtual learning experience in the second marking period; and
WHEREAS, Adjustments were identified to the placement of early release days and the addition of a professional development day that would support staff, students, and families in the virtual instructional experience, facilitate parent/teacher conferences, and minimize disruptions to the virtual instructional schedules in schools; now therefore be it
Resolved, That the Board of Education approve an amended Traditional School Year Calendar and Innovative School Year Calendar for School Year 2020–2021, as provided in the attachments.
Innovative calendar is for Nix and Arcola elementary schools