The Times West Virginian

February 2, 2014

Public meetings set on school calendar

180 instructional days mandatory for 2014-15 year

By Chelsi Baker
Times West Virginian

FAIRMONT — The Marion County Board of Education will hold two public meetings concerning the 2014-2015 school calendar.

The meetings will be held February 3 in the library at North Marion High School at 5 p.m. and March 3 in the multi-purpose room at Watson Elementary. Parents, teachers and other Marion County residents are invited to attend.

During Monday’s meeting, Curriculum and Instruction administrative assistant Randall Farley will discuss the calendar’s basic components, as well as what must be included by law.

The components discussed will give the board and the public a basic foundation to build from when designing the calendar.

The public can then offer input on all aspects of the calendar, including days off, proposed holiday breaks and the year’s first and last day of instruction.

This is a new approach at designing the calendar, said Superintendent of Schools Gary Price, after only using a committee of school employees in past years.

Schools sent home a survey with students asking parents for feedback on proposed changes. The survey asks parents’ preferences on the first and last day of classes, dates for Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter breaks and how snow days and other lost time should be made up.

Those interested can also complete the survey online at http://tinyurl.com/MarionCalendarSurvey until 11:59 p.m. Friday, Feb. 28.

Legislation passed las year has changed the rules for how the calendar must be designed and requires students to be in school for 180 instructional days. The policy was supposed to be implemented for this school year, but a grace was given due to its complexity.

“The entire calendar is up for discussion,” said Price, “so we’re interested in what input we will receive.”

Email Chelsi Baker at cbaker@timeswv.com or follow her on Twitter @CBakerTWV.