Eanes ISD adjusts 2020-21 calendar to provide staff with time for ‘mental health breaks’

Eanes ISD made adjustments to the 2020-21 academic calendar during a Nov. 17 board meeting. (Courtesy Fotolia)
Eanes ISD made adjustments to the 2020-21 academic calendar during a Nov. 17 board meeting. (Courtesy Fotolia)

Eanes ISD made adjustments to the 2020-21 academic calendar during a Nov. 17 board meeting. (Courtesy Fotolia)

In an effort to provide staff and students with additional instruction breaks, Eanes ISD trustees voted during a Nov. 17 meeting to adjust the 2020-21 academic calendar by approving eight early release days.

When the district reviewed the results of its fall 2020 staff survey, a majority of participants expressed to need for extra time amid the challenging school year.

“They indicated on the survey that the thing they would most appreciate, as we’ve all been working through teaching both remotely and in-person, would be more time,” Deputy Superintendent Jeff Arnett said.

In an effort to accommodate teachers’ requests, EISD will implement eight early release days beginning Dec. 10, which will be used as the program’s “pilot,” according to information from the district.

The decision will provide staff with time for mental health breaks and additional planning, which EISD referred to as “thought breaks.”


In ordnance with a recommended provided by EISD’s district leadership team, Feb. 3-4, Mar. 3-4, April 14-15 and May 19-20 will serve as early release dates.

According to Arnett, the break in instructional time will be accomplished by adjusting the first bell scheduled at the elementary school level to 7:40 a.m., a tactic permitted under 2015 House Bill 2610.

By ringing the bell at an earlier time each morning, EISD will add eligible minutes to the Texas Education Agency’s requirement of 75,600 annual minutes, which represents a district's operational time. This will also protect the district from losing any state funding.

However, the decision will not impact when parents drop their children off, according to Arnett, who added the adjustment only acknowledges the time students are already arriving on campus.

“It does not change anything for families or bus routes,” Arnett said. “Children don’t have to arrive earlier than they currently do.”
By Amy Rae Dadamo
Amy Rae Dadamo is the reporter for Lake Travis-Westlake, where her work focuses on city government and education. Originally from New Jersey, Amy Rae relocated to Austin after graduating from Ramapo College of New Jersey in May 2019.


MOST RECENT

Raising Cane's sells chicken fingers, chicken sandwiches, crinkle-cut fries, Texas toast and more. (Courtesy Raising Cane's)
Raising Cane's to open 2nd Cedar Park restaurant; Tacodeli coming to Circle C and more Central Texas news

Read the latest business and community news from the Central Texas area.

Effective June 26, unemployed Texans will no longer be eligible to receive the $300 weekly unemployment supplement from the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program. (Courtesy Adobe Stock)
Gov. Greg Abbott announces end-date for Texans to receive federal pandemic-related unemployment benefits

Effective June 26, unemployed Texans will no longer be eligible to receive the $300 weekly unemployment supplement from the Federal Pandemic Unemployment Compensation program.

Bollier Ciccone LLP will relocate to the Westlake Oaks Executive Park. (Courtesy Bollier Ciccone LLP)
Family and construction law firm to relocate to West Lake Hills

Family and construction law firm, Bollier Ciccone LLP will relocate its office from downtown Austin to West Lake Hills.

Photo of an H-E-B store
H-E-B makes curbside services free

Previously, curbside shoppers were charged a $4.95 fee on all orders, but moving forward that fee will be waived on purchases of $35 or more. Orders worth less than $35 will have a $2.95 "small basket surcharge" attached.

city sign
Lakeway City Council to consider resignation of police chief

Lakeway police chief Todd Radford submitted his resignation May 14.

The city of Austin's Smart Mobility Office has partnered with Ford on self-driving vehicle initiatives. (Courtesy Ford Motor Company)
Austin's transportation department paving the way for rise in autonomous vehicle traffic

Several private companies are working on autonomous vehicle initiatives in Austin in addition to the city's own smart infrastructure planning.

Eanes ISD's diversity, equity and inclusion consultant presented the results of a district survey during a May 11 meeting. (Amy Rae Dadamo/Community Impact Newspaper)
Eanes ISD reflects on a year of diversity, equity and inclusion work

Mark Gooden, Eanes ISD’s diversity, equity and inclusion or DEI consultant, provided trustees with an update on the district’s DEI work during a May 11 board meeting.

Goodfolks plans to open in late July to early August. (Ali Linan/Community Impact Newspaper)
New restaurant coming to Georgetown; new Hutto community to have nearly 1K lots and more top Central Texas news

Read the top business and community news from the past week from Central Texas.

Leander ISD
Leander ISD sets district mission statement

This district did not have an existing mission statement.

COVID-19 precautions such as a masking requirement remain in place at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport. (Courtesy Austin-Bergstrom International Airport)
'Signs of hope' on the horizon at Austin-Bergstrom International Airport after year-plus dip in air travel

Rising passenger counts, new airline operations and an increase in vaccinations could all support the airport's recovery in 2021.

Outgoing Mayor Sandy Cox May 13 gave her final video address to the citizens of Lakeway. (Courtesy City of Lakeway)
In final video address, outgoing Lakeway mayor reviews city accomplishments

Sandy Cox said she is honored to have served the City of Lakeway.