Norwalk's Lavielle Says School Districts Should Set Their Own Calendars

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Rep. Gail Lavielle opposes a plan to make school calendars the same throughout the state.
Rep. Gail Lavielle opposes a plan to make school calendars the same throughout the state. Photo Credit: File

WILTON, Conn. -- State Rep. Gail Lavielle (R-Wilton) is calling on legislators to vote down a plan to require a uniform calendar for schools in Connecticut.

Lavielle, who represents Wilton, Norwalk, and Westport, is ranking member of the Commerce Committee, and a member of the Appropriations, Education, and Higher Education Committees.

She recently introduced legislation that would have eliminated the requirement for school districts to adopt uniform regional school calendars. Her proposal, which she raised in an amendment to a related bill, did not pass after much discussion by the committee.

"I am very disappointed that the majority of the Education Committee’s members refused to take into account the very strong objections expressed by school districts throughout our district and Western Connecticut to the mandate for uniform regional school calendars,” said Lavielle. “School districts have always been able to collaborate to adopt regional school calendars if they wanted to, so why should they now be required to do it?"

The adoption of uniform regional school calendars, which would take local control away from Boards of Education, was mandated by the state in legislation passed in 2013. Lavielle’s amendment would have made adopting uniform regional school calendars optional, preserving local control over education.

“Many educators, administrators, and Board of Education members in our part of the state strongly oppose this idea for several reasons, including professional development imperatives and local customs and preferences, and many have also said that the potential for savings on transportation is negligible. The mandate for regional school calendars is just one more indication of the one-size-fits-all view of education that is so prevalent in the General Assembly. School districts and the families they serve should have more control over their destiny.”

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Who really cares what she thinks