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Alternatives to Year Round Calendar Examined

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Teton County School District Board of Education yesterday decided to look at a variety of alternatives to a proposal to change the school calendar that would reduce summer vacation.  The School Board held a public workshop regarding the proposal to review the public input they had received. More than 300 submitted comments from parents and staff were reviewed at the workshop. About 68 percent of the comments were against changing the traditional school year to one of the school board’s “balanced calendar” options. An overwhelming number of parents and teachers attended the workshop and many voiced their disapproval of changing the school year. Concerns were raised that there is no sufficient data on why year-round school is beneficial and that summer is an important time for students to pursue other endeavors including summer jobs.  Some school board members echoed concern about a lack of data on the benefits of year-round school while other members said the proposed calendar would prepare students to compete on a global level and combat learning loss that some students suffer during the summer. The board decided to consider a list of other items regarding the school calendar, including summer school options for all students, a trimester system for the high school, and lengthening school days. The board will decide on next year’s school calendar during its February meeting.

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