School calendar not likely to change next year
The school calendar in Kamloops will not change next year if trustees approve a recommendation from school district superintendent Terry Sullivan at the Monday, Dec. 3, school-board meeting.
New provincial legislation has given board of education the power to implement calendars for up to three years, as long as the number of teaching days and hours conforms to legislation.
The legislation has led to discussion about the feasibility of year-round schooling, a practice seen in schools in Maple Ridge, Richmond, Salmon Arm and elsewhere in B.C.
However, Sullivan is recommending the Kamloops-Thompson school district adopt a standard school calendar for the 2013-2014 year, noting the tight timeline involved as calendars for the following school year must be approved by Feb. 28.
"We have already had a number of parent inquiries regarding the school calendar for next year," Sullivan wrote in his report to trustees. "As a result, it is suggested that the board proceed to set a calendar for next year similar to the standard school calendar set perviously by the Ministry of Education."
Sullivan said this will allow the education committee time to establish a process for public consultation on changes, if any, to the school calendar in subsequent years.
Sullivan is recommending the standard calendar and associated dates be referred to all partner groups, including parent advisory committees, for comment, and that trustees approve in February a calendar for the 2013-2014 school year only.
The proposed standard 2013-2014 calendar is identical to this year's calendar, with 193 days in session and 186 days of instruction, leaving six professional-development days for teachers, in addition to six statutory holidays on which schools will not be in session.
There are 853 hours of instruction in kindergarten, 878 hours of instruction in grades 1 to 7 and 952 hours of instruction in grades 8 to 12.
The school year would begin on Sept. 4, shut down for Christmas break on Dec. 21, re-open on Jan. 4, close for spring break on March 15, re-open on March 25 and close for summer vacation on June 28.