The DeKalb County Board of Education formally adopted the school calendar for the 2014-2015 year Thursday night during the regular monthly meeting.
(CLICK PDF LINK HERE TO VIEW ACTUAL SCHOOL CALENDAR FOR 2014-15)
The calendar has four dates designated as Early Release/Professional Development Days. Concerned that four abbreviated days might create a hardship for some parents, Fourth District member Billy Miller voted against passage suggesting the calendar should instead have two stockpile days . "I know it probably puts a hardship on some parents to be able to get their kids there (school) and then get them to a facility (daycare) afterwards when they are at work. I have talked to several teachers and it seems like those I've talked to don't seem like the administrative (early release) days do much good and thought maybe we should look in the future of going back to the stock pile days where they had two instead of the four early release days. We've only been one year with the early release days so maybe next year when this calendar comes back up we'll look at that," he said.
"For the educational benefit of the children, I think it (Early Release Days) actually proves to be a good thing," Director Mark Willoughby responded. " We realize it is a hardship on parents finding somebody to take care of their kids but for the educational benefit of the children we think it's a good thing. The calendar committee examines where best to have these (Early Release) days and how best to use those. I realize there may be differences of opinions on that, but with the new regulations and guidelines coming out, that's why we've scheduled these days where they are. They are strategically scheduled and this is what the calendar committee has recommended. If there's a need to change that, we'll look at changing it next year but with the things that are coming on the educators and students throughout the state, it gives our teachers more time to use strategies at particular times during the year and for us to develop professional development," he said.
Under the new calendar, registration for all students will be Thursday, July 31. That will be an abbreviated school day from 7:45 a.m. until 9:30 a.m.
Friday, August 1 will be an administrative day for teachers only
The first full day of school for all students will be Monday, August 4
A system wide in-service day will be Monday, July 28
All teachers will report to their individual schools on Tuesday and Wednesday, July 29 and July 30
Students will not attend on Monday, Labor Day, September 1.
Schools will be closed for the fall break October 20-31
Students will be off for the Thanksgiving holiday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday, November 26, 27, & 28 and for the Christmas break December 22 through January 2. Friday, December 19 will be the last day students attend before Christmas break and that will be an abbreviated school day. Monday, January 5 will be a stockpile day for teachers. Students will return after the holidays on Tuesday, January 6.
Schools will be closed for Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on Monday, January 19 and for President's Day, Monday, February 16.
Schools will be closed for spring break March 30 through April 3
No school for students Memorial Day, Monday May 25.
The following are designated as Early Release dates: Friday, August 29; Friday, October 3; Friday, February 13; and Friday, March 6
Students will not attend on Friday, May 22. That will be an administrative day and all teachers must attend. The last day of school will be Tuesday, May 26. That will be an abbreviated school day and report cards will be sent home.
Parent-Teacher Conferences will be held on Tuesday, October 7 and Tuesday, March 10 at DeKalb County High School from 3:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m.
Parent-Teacher Conferences will also be held from 3:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. Thursday, October 9 and Thursday, March 12 at DeKalb Middle School, Northside Elementary, Smithville Elementary, and DeKalb West School.
DCHS report cards will be sent home on Monday, October 6 and Monday, March 9 and at all other schools on Tuesday, October 7 and Tuesday, March 10.
In other business, Director Willoughby presented his monthly update on personnel moves.
The following have been employed since last month:
Deborah Cunningham, interim Educational Assistant at Smithville Elementary School
Emily Phillips, Music teacher to replace Lori Sexton who resigned
Jasmine Vazquez, certified substitute teacher
Trent Vickers, Maintenance worker
Rena Willoughby, transferred from substitute list to Education Assistant at DeKalb West School
Leave of Absence:
Audrey Russell, teacher at DeKalb West School, granted a leave as requested
Amanda Johnson, teacher at Smithville Elementary School, granted a leave as requested
Kealah Curtis, Smithville Elementary School educational assistant
Aaron Young, maintenance worker
Lori Sexton, Music teacher
Dean Haugh, educational assistant at DCHS, retired
Helen LaFever, cafeteria worker, retired
Kelli Bullard, teacher at Smithville Elementary School