The Tacoma School Board wants parents to take a look at proposed school calendars for the next two school years.
The two calendar proposals were drawn up based on surveys of Tacoma parents and staff. But board members want to give the public another chance to comment before they vote on calendars for the 2014-15 and 2015-16 school years at the April 10 board meeting.
The draft calendar for this coming fall would have students in school 178 days, and include 1,068 instructional hours. Two of the school-year’s 180 state-mandated days would be teacher-only days -- one at the start of the school year for training and preparation, and another the day after the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday, for teacher professional development. The school district would need a state waiver to excuse students from school for those two days.
Lynne Rosellini, assistant superintendent of human resources, said that the following school year, 2015-16, is planned as a full 180-day calendar. She said the district is anticipating a state-mandated increase in instructional hours, to 1,080, that year. Legislation passed this year mandates the increase only for high school students, but Rosellini said Tacoma also wants to increase instructional time for students across the board.
“We are in negotiations with teachers to determine how we will accomplish 1,080 hours without waiver days and also have time for teachers and principals to prepare for the start of the school year and build in professional development,” she added.
Another school board goal is to give families advance notice of school calendars, as well as minimizing the number of half-days for students.
To view the calendars, go to the school district website at www.tacomaschools.org/calendar.
Parents with comments can e-mail them to email@example.com.