First Day

Danny Rocha and Beronica Camejo start the third grade at Walker Park Elementary School in Monroe, Ga., on Wednesday, Aug. 1, 2018.

MONROE — The Walton County School District has finalized its rough draft calendar for the 2019-20 school year, and district officials feel they’ve met all the requirements this year.

Rusty Linder, assistant superintendent for the Walton County School District, presented the tentative calendar to the Walton County Board of Education Tuesday evening at the board’s monthly work session and said they worked to meet all the issues raised by parents planning for the next school year.

“We kept in mind what parents asked for: not to start school in July, keep fall break, keep a week of Thanksgiving,” Linder said. “We did all that and more.”

School will start Aug. 1, 2019, which falls on a Thursday and run through May 21, 2020, which also falls on a Thursday, the first time the district has not run through a Friday in some years.

“By ending the school year on a Thursday, it gives us options for graduation,” Linder said. “While we will likely still have graduations on Friday, we have more room for different plans.”

Most of the expected holidays are in place, as well: the weeklong fall break will run from Oct. 14-18, a week for Thanksgiving will last from Nov. 25-29 and spring break will be April 6-10.

Christmas break will remain shorter than in years past, with the holiday break not occurring until Dec. 20, only five days before Christmas itself, and lasting through Jan. 3.

Still, Linder said planning all the breaks was simpler than usual thanks to a conveniently calendar.

“The holidays were good to us on this calendar and fell in good places,” Linder said.

In other district news, WCSD Superintendent Nathan Franklin mentioned the district is examining a new schedule for day-to-day operations, moving from the four-classes-a-day block schedule to a modified block schedule that would involve five classes a day, with some lasting only a semester, as currently scheduled, but some lasting all year long, to allow students more time to study academic subjects.

No decision has been made yet, but Franklin said the new schedule looks like it could be promising.

“It creates more flexibility,” Franklin said. “We’re still looking for the negatives.”

The school board also discussed the possibility of adding more school resource officers to the district, as recently requested by the Walton County Sheriff’s Office. While the board appeared to be in favor of such an expansion, implementation of how many additional officers, and where they would be located, is still up in the air.

The board will vote on the tentative calendar at Tuesday’s regular board meeting.

News Editor

Stephen Milligan is the news editor of The Walton Tribune. He lives in Monroe and is a graduate of the University of Georgia.

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