Survey seeks input on calendar choices for 2024-25 school year

ROCK HALL — Kent County Public Schools staff and families and community members are invited to fill out an online survey to provide their input on the draft 2024-25 school calendars.

The survey can be found at http://tinyurl.com/375397cv.

The calendar survey will close Sunday, Feb. 11.

There are two calendars under review by the Kent County Board of Education. The drafts and the survey results are expected to be presented at the board’s next meeting, Monday, Feb. 12.

In previous years, the final two drafts differed primarily due to start times. One draft would start before Labor Day and the other after the late summer holiday.

Results from a calendar survey that got the planning process started showed overwhelming support for a post-Labor Day start to the 2024-25 school year.

The difference in the two draft 2024-25 calendars is the length of breaks throughout the year.

One has longer breaks, pushing the end of school back to Friday, June 20.

The other draft brings the end date for school up to Thursday, June 12, resulting in shorter breaks throughout the year.

Maryland has a number of scheduling requirements for schools, notably that students must have 180 days of instruction.

Also, contracts with Kent County Public Schools’ bargaining units include observed holidays.

Included in the draft calendars are early dismissal days and school closures throughout the year to provide professional development time for teachers and staff.

Both draft calendars under consideration have the start of the school year for students falling on Tuesday, Sept. 3.

The drafts continue Kent County Public Schools’ traditional staggered start to the year: students in grades one through six and high school freshmen report for their first day on Sept. 3; grades seven and eight and 10 through 12 begin Wednesday, Sept. 4; and pre-kindergarten and kindergarten would start school Thursday, Sept. 5.

For the fall, both calendars have the same long weekend with parent-teacher conferences Thursday, Oct. 17 and schools and offices closing Friday, Oct. 18 for the Maryland State Education Association conference and the same Thanksgiving break beginning Wednesday, Nov. 27.

With Christmas and New Year’s Day falling on Wednesdays, winter break is different on the two drafts.

The draft with the June 20 end date for the year shows winter break starting Monday, Dec. 23, with students back in school Monday, Jan. 6.

The draft with the school year ending June 12 has a shorter winter break, beginning Monday, Dec. 23 and schools re-opening Thursday, Jan. 2.

Additional holiday breaks in January and February are Martin Luther King Jr. Day and Presidents Day.

Both draft calendars include a spring parent-teacher conference day of Wednesday, March 19.

Spring break is different on the draft calendars.

The calendar ending June 20 offers a longer spring break, April 14-21. The calendar with the June 13 end date has spring break running April 17-21.

Memorial Day (Monday, May 26) is a day off on both draft 2024-25 calendars.

Both calendar options also include two inclement weather days.

Trish McGee, owner and publisher of The Evening Enterprise, is an elected member of the Kent County Board of Education. She did not contribute to this news release.

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