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A school schedule vote!

Discussion in 'General Chat Forum' started by Brassy, Jun 13, 2008.

  1. Brassy

    Brassy Hiyah

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    OK just my "4 cents" here! :blahblah:

    I remember when schools in Loudoun County began the last week of August and the kids got out the second week of June. There was some reason - I think LCPS could do that due to the Agriculture?

    Anyway. It was nice for the kids not to be in school as it got hotter, and these days it seems like every year they get out later than the previous year. Soon they'll be in school until June 30th!

    If we can't go to year round school - 3 months on with 2 week breaks in between, then something needs to be done.

    Another thing that boggles MY MIND? and My darling daughter's? In Middle school, they take the finals in June. If they are not in a class that has a test that day, they see movies and sign yearbooks...things like that. My daughter, for the last 3 years, has thought that this is a ridiculous waste of time. No wonder the kids get bored and count the days until school is out. Why can't they take a page from the HS, and let them come home when they finish the exams for the day (at least the 8th graders.)The fact that they are there counts towards the full days they have to be in school anyway.

    I'd like to see us get back to the last week of August. Many schools outside of VA are already out - in NC, CA and IL they were out last week. of course they also start earlier than we do. When my BF lived in GA they began the 2nd week of August, but got out at the end of May or 1st week of June. Probably due to heat, but hey we get almost the same weather here!


    I'd be interested to find out what you all feel about this issue. And if you know of other states and when they get out
     
  2. Chsalas

    Chsalas Member

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    I aggree. Year around with a few weeks break between. Student would retain much more education that way. I've been supporting this since I was in teaching a decade ago.
     
  3. latka

    latka Active Member

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    I would hate year round school. August is just as hot as June, maybe hotter!
     
  4. vdb

    vdb New Member

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    Personally, I'd like to see them start the week before Labor Day and out the first week of June.
     
  5. eam

    eam New Member

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    The past three years they have gotten out June 14,19th,17th - no significant change. All the kids go to school 180 days - I'd rather have August free than an extra week in June. That said, I grew up going back to school the day after labor day - so that seems normal to me...
     
  6. Brassy

    Brassy Hiyah

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    Indeed, there are many benefits to year round school, and I don't think kids would mind having 2 week breaks every 3 months. Probably still includes the normal days off for teacher workdays, holidays and voting. I think it is a real problem the teachers have every year spending a month or two re-teaching what the kids learned in May/June of the previous school year. Perhaps that would allow more more creativity in teaching rather than "Let's hurry through this" teaching to the test. And of course, our kids would be far better educated - as we always show poorly behind a few other countries.
     
  7. latka

    latka Active Member

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    My kids would hate it and so would I.
     
  8. foodie

    foodie New Member

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    Brassy and others--

    I think that the VA state law states that school has "technically" to start after Labor Day. The school district can apply for a waiver to start earlier if they do not use up their snow days. I read this last year somewhere; but cannot remember where. Loudoun County started before Labor Day several years ago I remember reading and Hatrick received a waiver to start earlier. Don't remember the story.

    In GA where we are from, public schools in Gwinnett County starts around the 1st or 2nd week of August and ends the Friday before Memorial Day. Still a 180 days but sometimes inconvenient for working parents, etc. Gwinnett County has full-day kindergarten in all of their schools. Too bad we don't here.

    Here is the reason--it is called the "King's Dominion Law". Based on amusement park laws and the weather exemption is the part of the waiver, I believe. Read the following link for details--

    www.wtopnews.com/?nid=600&sid=1334053

    Foodie
     
  9. Brassy

    Brassy Hiyah

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    We hear you loud and clear, chica:)
     
  10. Brassy

    Brassy Hiyah

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    Yep Foodie, My Nephew start Kindergarten in the fall in Charlotte and it is all day.
     
  11. vacliff

    vacliff "You shouldn't say that."

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    How about this radical thought:
    Loudoun builds in a bunch of weather days into the schedule. If you don't use them, end the school year that many days sooner!
     
  12. Mr. Linux

    Mr. Linux Senior Member & Moderator Forum Staff

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    Believe it or not, the school boards are limited by a State law which keeps them from starting school before labor day (and maybe ending before Memorial Day as well) in VA; I think it dates back to some lobbying by the owners of Kings Dominion, who didn't want their 'season' to be cut short. So, I think the fault lies with the State legislature and not with the county. I could be wrong though...
     
  13. cindyb

    cindyb New Member

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    It is the kings dominion law that schools in VA don't start before Labor Day. That being said, the state looks at a 5 or 10 year formula to see how many snow days a district uses. If the district applies for a waiver because it uses alot of snow days, school can begin in Aug. Sometimes we have very dry years in that formula so we aren't always given the waiver. As far as giving snow days back at the end of the year, these days are supposedly banked, and gives us a fixed schedule. The bummer is years like this where we didn't use the days but the years that we use many extra snow days, we don't make them up but counties like Fairfax do. Fairfax has made up days before by cutting spring break short, adding on days at the end of the year, etc. I believe 4-5 years ago we had a year like that.

    The middle school not getting out early like the high school may have something to do with the bussing situation. Most of the busses run between schools all day long, from elem. to middle to high, to kindergarten, and back again. It may not be possible to change all the bus schedules to accomodate early dismissal in middle and high, but pick up regular time at the elem. level.
     
  14. Brassy

    Brassy Hiyah

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    Thanks Cindy, I scooped you by personally speaking with LCPS Public Info officer and here is what he emailed me to post as he does not post to forums at all:

    The law in Virginia governing the opening of school is commonly known as "The Kings Dominion Rule." Its a longstanding law designed to lengthen the tourist season through Labor Day. To go to school before Labor Day, you have to meet the conditions of a convoluted formula: A school division must have missed a total of 40 days of school in five of the past 10 years. We don't have any five years that add up to 40 so we must go after Labor Day per state law.

    We would prefer to go before Labor Day and end earlier. The School Board has asked our delegates to the General Assembly to have this law abolished. So far this has gone nowhere.

    The state requires you go to school for 180 days. We go for 183 so that we can bank time against the possibility of bad weather. This means we don't have snow days and will never have to make up days should we have a very bad weather year. (Cutting into spring break, Saturday school, extended school year are not options in Loudoun.) The extra days allow us to stay on a fixed calendar. Once we announce our calendar for the following year (usually in October) that's it. It's set in stone. There will be no changes.

    Loudoun had year-round school in the early 1970s because of overcrowding in Sterling Park. It did not go particularly well. There also are budget considerations in keeping the buildings open and staff on hand in the summer.
    On the other hand between summer school, specialized camps and athletics, we almost do go to school year-round.
    - Wayde B. Byard, public information officer, Loudoun County Public Schools
     
  15. latka

    latka Active Member

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    Just wanted to make sure you all know that I would hate it.:)
     
  16. shapple

    shapple New Member

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    I went to year round school growing up and loved it! We went to school for 9 weeks - then got 3 weeks off. We would get 2 weeks off at Christmas and 2 weeks off between school years. In the summer, we would head straight to the pool after school. My parents appreciated it too. As working parents, they didn't have to worry about extended periods of lining up daycare. Our family would take family vacations during off seasons. When Prince William County switched to the traditional summer vacation schedule, the community was not happy.
     
  17. T8ergirl

    T8ergirl New Member

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    I believe that school should be year-round. No one needs the summer off to tend the farm anymore. If you look at it objectively and don't consider what we've gotten used to and what we "like", you have to admit that there is no reason for the schedule as it exists.

    As far as the temperature goes, I'm not sure why that matters. Don't the schools have heating and airconditioning? No one ever says "let's not have school in the winter because its just too chilly!"

    All of that is way too radical and advanced for LCPS which can't even offer full day kindergarten.

    In the current scenario, though, I think one week makes zero difference and from a preference standpoint I think summer runs through Labor Day. I also don't understand why its better to send kids in the south back to school in early/mid august when that is WAY hotter than June.
     
  18. cindyb

    cindyb New Member

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    When we lived in CA, schools there were talking about going year-round to alleviate overcrowding. The way it would work is that school was open every week of the year (except the major holidays) and a percentage of the school would have breaks. Teachers would have to rotate rooms, since when his/her class was on a break another class would be returning and occupying that room. It was looking to be a nightmare as they were saying there would be no way to guarantee that your children would be on the same schedule, particularily if you had 2 different schools. The district was also talking about only making certain schools year-round (since parents fought hard not to have boundaries changed because schools in the district did not offer equal education) and the rest of the district would operate on the traditional schedule, again a pain if you had kids at different schools.
     
  19. mdcrim

    mdcrim Member

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    I would love year round schools if we could convince our surrounding jurisdictions to do the same on slightly offset schedules. That may help to alleviate some of our world famous traffic.
     

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