School would end earlier next year with 1-day fall break under proposed calendar

School will begin earlier next year and end earlier as well if a newly proposed calendar is approved by the St. Charles Parish School Board.

The first day of school is tentatively set for Aug. 10 while the final day for students  would be May 23, 2015.That shifts the calendar about a half week earlier than it was last year.

Regina McMillan, public information coordinator for St. Charles Parish Public Schools, said the changes were proposed after more than 1,200 community members filled out a survey expressing their preferences.

“We sent an email home to all parents and all employees asking for their input. We also put it on the website, Facebook and Twitter and also put up reminders that the deadline was coming to try and get extra responses,” she said.

McMillan said the community input was gathered from the surveys and implemented in the new calendar when possible.

The most popular options were a two-day fall break with school starting early and ending later or a one-day fall break with school starting early and ending a day earlier.McMillan said the calendar committee has opted for the second option because it fits the schools systems’ goals better.

“We looked at how the calendar fell and discussed what would be best for parents and what would be best for teachers and, most importantly, what is best for instructional purposes,” she said.

Future testing dates were also left in flux after Gov. Bobby Jindal attempted to opt the state out of Common Core State Standards, leaving school officials to wonder whether the testing days could be accurately identified in the calendar.

“Basically what I have done is I’ve just took the testing dates from this school year and just looked at where those dates would fall if they used the same testing for next year. It would mean then that window for end of year testing would end about May 22,” Rachel Allemand, Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum, Instruction & Assessment, said. “So I think we are OK, but of course the whole calendar is based upon my projection, it is not that the state has said these are the actual testing dates next year.”

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