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Norwalk Schools Examine Changes For 2016-17 Calendar

Superintendent of Schools Steven J. Adamowski is proposing changes to the 2016-17 school calendar that would give students more instructional time before key tests in the spring.
Superintendent of Schools Steven J. Adamowski is proposing changes to the 2016-17 school calendar that would give students more instructional time before key tests in the spring. Photo Credit: Norwalk Board of Education

NORWALK, Conn. -- Norwalk's Superintendent of Schools Steven Adamowski is proposing changes to the 2016-17 school calendar that would increase the amount of instructional time students receive before key tests in the spring.

Adamowski has presented the draft calendar to the Board of Education, which will vote on the proposed changed in February. Until then, Adamowski said the calendar remans a "draft," and is subject to change.

At the same time, the superintendent also plans to propose a calendar for the 2017-18 school year, giving families and others in the community a head start on planning for the following school year.

As part of the district’s goal to "Raise the Bar & Close the Gap," the 2016-17 draft calendar was designed to increase the amount of instructional time, especially before key state assessment tests in the spring.

Other changes were driven by the need to align with new guidelines set under state law for Regional Uniform School Calendars. Those guidelines include:

  • At least 180 days of actual student school days;
  • A common start date within the region before Labor Day;
  • three uniform vacation periods, including December holidays, an April break and summer vacation, and up to 5 flexible days.

A copy of the calendar and its proposed changes can be found here.

Other highlights of the calendar include:

  • Norwalk would use one “flexible day” to start school on the Wednesday before Labor Day. All students in Grades 1-12 would start on Aug. 31.
  • Half the kindergarten class would attend school on Aug. 31, the second half will be in school on Sept. 1.
  • A district-wide orientation day would be scheduled for incoming Grade 6 students.
  • Columbus Day would no longer be a holiday, adding an extra instructional day to the month.
  • A full week of April vacation, as outlined in the uniform calendar, remains as is.
  • Early dismissal days at the end-of-year would be reduced from five to two with June 9 as the tentative last day of school. Any cancellations for weather would be added at the end of the year.

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