FUSD Looking At Changing Its Calendar

February 11, 2009 10:49:34 PM PST
Students are always excited about summer and winter breaks, and now it's a hot topic among parents and educators as well. Recommendations for a new school calendar are being presented to the Fresno Unified School Board.Students often look forward to the days where they can take a break from the books. Some Fresno Unified parents want the school district to consider shortening the winter break from three to two weeks, and extending the summer vacation by an additional week.

Lisa Melkonian said, "There are too many holidays in the year too many days off they can just apply those holidays to the beginning of the year and have those days off."

Maricela Velasquez said, "That's usually when we do as a family go on more of a vacation."

Maricela Velasquez has two daughters at Sunset Elementary she says in the winter she pays nearly $600-$800 dollars more in daycare.

"It does tend to hurt a little more in my pocket because now I have to pay an additional week over the winter holiday," said Velasquez.

A Calendar Committee will recommend the school board continue a three week winter break schedule. This has been in place for two years. Carol Mills says the committee is made of staff, parents and students from all over the district.

Fresno Unified Trustee Carol Mills said, "That sends a message to me that being under the calendar for a couple of years many people who previously had concerns about it have been convinced this is a better calendar."

Mills says under the current schedule attendance after the holidays has improved and according to teachers-- student behavior is better after a three week winter break.

Trustees will actually vote on the issue in two weeks. The board will also receive a budget update and vote to change school boundaries in Southeast Fresno due to overcrowding. That means several hundred students may be moving to a new school.

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