North Callaway School Board approves calendar changes

North Callaway R-I Schools will be switching from a calendar based on number of days of student attendance to one based on the number of student instruction hours in the 2014-15 calendar approved by the school board during Thursday night’s meeting.

North Callaway will be going from 174 school days and a total of 1,058 instruction hours in 2013-14 to 1,064 instruction hours and 168 student attendance days for 2014-15.

The first day of school for 2014-15 will be Aug. 20, with school ending May 22 — the same day as graduation for the Class of 2015.

Although the measurement of time used to develop next year’s calendar was different, Superintendent Bryan Thomsen said there are only a few changes that stand out for him.

“The first thing is there are no half-days on the calendar,” Thomsen said. “We talked about how effective half-days are as far as instruction, and the impact they have on parents.”

According to Thomsen, other standout adjustments include a slightly later start date than over the past several years, seniors not finishing a week earlier than the rest of the district’s students and moving Spring Break — March 30-April 6 — to make the district’s calendar better match that of Mexico so the district’s vocational technology students lose fewer days of instruction there.

“A lot goes into the calendar. It’s a little different, but I’m excited,” Thomsen said. “We were able to put in more professional development (three full days) which has been a goal for administration — the impact it has on our kids is a positive thing.”

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