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Pasco School Board to consider calendar options for 2014-15



A proposal to have Pasco school students attend classes on Veterans Day 2014 in exchange for a week off at Thanksgiving has one School Board member wondering why they have to choose between the holidays.

Board chairwoman Alison Crumbley said she had received plenty of calls from families and employees asking for a repeat of the district's 2012 weeklong vacation for Thanksgiving. She also likes the idea of closing in honor of military veterans, though. Hillsborough schools have found a way to recognize both, after all, she noted.

"I've always been told we can't," Crumbley said. "Maybe it needs a little investigation."

The difference between Pasco's proposal and the Hillsborough calendar is the date each district picks to close the first semester. Pasco traditionally ends the first term before winter break, while Hillsborough waits until mid-January. That gives Hillsborough more flexibility in setting days off in the fall, because it has less chance of falling below the state-required minimum hours in that first grading period.

Pasco administration officials have justified their decision by stating that students should not have to worry about semester exams over break. That argument has not been an issue in Hillsborough, where calendar disputes have focused on secular vs. religious holidays.

While not seeking a holiday battle, Crumbley said she would at least like to discuss following the lead of lengthening the first semester.

"It should definitely be mentioned," she said. "I want to hear all the explanations."

The issue is scheduled for a vote at the board's Tuesday evening meeting.

[Last modified: Thursday, December 12, 2013 1:24pm]


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