A proposed calendar for the 2018-2019 school year was presented to the Pearland ISD board Tuesday, Feb. 13, but the board pushed back, asking for a calendar that ends the school year before Memorial Day.
The calendar presented has the school year starting for students on August 20, begins Christmas break with a half-day on Thursday, Dec. 20, and ends the school year on Thursday, May 30th, after Memorial Day.
The district is required to schedule 75,600 minutes of instruction every year. The calendar meets those requirements, as well as adds extra minutes in case of two bad weather days.
Trustee Jeff Barry asked what the objection was to ending before Memorial Day. Sonia Serrano, assistant superintendent for intermediate education, replied that the committee preferred to be in school after Memorial Day, rather than start the year earlier or shorten Christmas break.
The calendar presented to the district Tuesday night received the majority of the votes from a committee of teachers and parents. Only one vote went to a calendar that ended the school year before Memorial Day.
According to Serrano, parents’ must-haves for the calendar include a week off at Thanksgiving and two weeks off at Christmas.
“I have probably never had as many complaints about a calendar as I did this year. People in general just thought that it was absolutely crazy that we had 13 days off at Christmas and that we still couldn’t get out before Memorial Day,” Trustee Pam Boegler said.
Boegler also said that the days after Memorial Day are not good educational days.
“A lot of the main concern of those two and a half days after Memorial Day is I think they are probably completely ridiculous,” Boegler said. “Let’s be realistic, they’re not learning anything.”
Superintendent Kelly suggested that the district add two school days at Christmas break, as well as 3 minutes to each day of the school year. This would end the school year for the students before Memorial Day.
Serrano will present the schedule with Kelly’s suggestions at the board’s March 6 meeting.