Wilton school administrators are rethinking the school year calendar, again. They discovered that the current February break plan–starting on a Thursday and ending the following Monday–negatively impacted attendance levels over both of the two weeks across which the break stretched. As a result, says Superintendent Kevin Smith, his team has rejiggered the calendar to contain February break in a single week, beginning with the 2020-2021 school year.
He presented the idea for changing the calendar at last night’s Board of Education meeting. The BOE members would have to approve the change to make it official.
Accommodating the change would also require adjusting the schedule elsewhere to ensure the district still meets the mandated 180 days. To do so, Smith has proposed moving the first day of school one day earlier from Aug. 25, 2020 to Aug. 24, 2020, and sliding the last day of school one day later from June 9, 2021 to June 10, 2021.
As a result, Wilton Schools will have a full week in February for winter break, as well as a full week in April for spring break, beginning with the 2020-2021 school year.
Smith said the faculty voted and a majority of those who responded preferred the new weeklong February break plan. He also got positive feedback from the PTA presidents about the change.
One thing Smith did not feel comfortable doing was making a similar change for the 2019-2020 school calendar.
“The feedback I get from families is people are mapping vacations, they really do plan a year out. So I get very uncomfortable when we’re making changes inside a year’s notice. So I intentionally targeted ’20-’21.”
The Board of Education members seemed to receive the idea positively; they will vote to approve at the next BOE meeting on April 11.
CURRENTLY Approved 2020-2021 Calendar
NEW, PROPOSED 2020-2021 Calendar