School's In Session Part 1

It's almost the end of the school year, but many are already thinking about the beginning.

Schools in Kentucky have schedules that vary from district to school district.

The same is true for the two districts in Warren County.

Warren County is on more of a revised standard calendar, while Bowling Green Independent is on an alternative calendar.

Both districts have a calendar committee, with a representative from each school to decide when school will begin, end, and different days that students will have off.

The committees then take their calendars to their respective Boards of Education.

The board then decides if the calendar will be approved.

Students in the state have to complete 175 instructional days and teachers have to work 185 days, which includes their professional development days.

Debbie Roddy, a member of Warren County's Calendar Committee, says: "It may be training for portfolio scoring, training for CATS testing, you know the things we're required to have professional development in throughout the year."

Roddy says in the Warren County School District, high schools somewhat drive the calendar because seniors have the option of early graduation.

Roddy says: "In order for a senior to graduate mid year which is generally after the second semester at Christmas break we must have half of the school year at that point in time."

Roddy says those on the calendar committee want the students to complete their half a year by the winter break, so they have time to prepare for what's next.

She says: "If we can graduate them prior to Christmas break, they have time to get ready for the spring semester."

The Bowling Green School District is on an alternative calendar where its students have nine weeks of classes and then take a two week break.

Jon Lawson, the Director of People Personnel, says: "It still permits us to start school at the first of August and get out at the end of May."

One of the reasons those with the Bowling Green City School District chose this calendar was so students who are falling behind have the chance to catch up during the school year.

Lawson says: "They can attend remediation that second week of the fall break and earn some points. They can also develop a better understanding of that material."

Both districts say they have the students’ best interests in mind when they decide what the calendar will be.

Roddy says in the budget recently approved by Governor Ernie Fletcher, beginning in the 2007 to 2008 eight school year students will have to go to class for two extra days bringing the total to 177.

Bowling Green City Schools recently conducted a survey, so parents, teachers, and staff members could give their opinions on how long the breaks should be.

For more information on that survey you can log onto: