Florida law requires public schools to provide at least 180 days of student instruction, or the equivalent number of hours.
That added flexibility offers wiggle room, particularly to charter schools that do not want to strictly follow their local district's academic calendar. They just need to get the School Board's approval of an alternate calendar.
In Pasco County, the number of charter schools seeking such permission is growing. For 2018-19, four have asked for different student dates — Dayspring Academy, Classical Preparatory, Countryside Montessori and Athenian Academy.
Among their requests, Athenian and Classical have asked to hold their first day for students on Aug. 15, rather than the district start date of Aug. 13. Dayspring and Classical have also proposed starting their winter break on Dec. 21, one day earlier than the district, and also to end classes onMay 24, five days earlier than the district.
Notably, all the charter schools have agreed to hold classes on Veterans Day, as the district decided to do a few years ago to recognize and teach about veterans.
The School Board will consider approval of the charter school calendars on Tuesday. See the items here.