School vacations up for debate - East Valley Tribune: East Valley Education News

School vacations up for debate

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Posted: Thursday, October 14, 2004 11:11 am | Updated: 6:06 pm, Thu Oct 6, 2011.

October 14, 2004

The Paradise Valley Unified School District calendar committee is asking the public to help decide school breaks for the 2005-06 and 2006-07 school years.

Surveys with two calendar options are being sent home this week with students from some schools, are available in the front office at all schools and are on the district’s Web site at Surveys are to be returned to the district by Oct. 29.

Both calendar options have all the required holidays, provide balanced semesters, have the same start date and keep the one-day fall break, twoweek winter break and oneweek spring break.

The only differences are an optional one - day spring recess, the last day of school and the timing of the one-day fall recess in 2006.

Committee members said they would like to balance offering the one-day breaks on a Christian holiday in the spring and a Jewish holiday in the fall.

The effort is complicated by the fact it can offer Good Friday as the one-day break in April, because it always falls on a Friday, but cannot offer the same one-day break on Yom Kippur in October, because the Jewish holiday does not always fall on a Friday or a Monday.

"We’re trying to determine how important it is for families to have those religious observance days off," said district spokeswoman Judi Willis.

The committee wants to keep the one-day fall break on a Friday or Monday to avoid students taking extra days off.

The committee will make a recommendation to the governing board Nov. 2, and the board will vote Dec. 2. A separate task force, set to convene in the spring, will determine whether to recommend the district move from a traditional school year to a modified year-round calendar with two-week intercessions and a shorter summer break.

Should the task force decide to implement changes in 2006, the calendar committee will defer to the new school year configuration.

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