SD5 releases draft calendar

Draft schedule for 2015-2016 school year has been released for public consultation.

While not necessarily a big-ticket item, the Southeast Kootenay School District released a draft calendar for the 2015-16 calendar year.

The calendar is currently available for public review and there is also potential for changes depending on feedback from district staff, teachers and parents, according to board chair Frank Lento.

“The protocol is we have a draft to meet the Minister of Education’s regulations in terms of minutes and hours per year and so on,” said Lento. “So we’ve drafted that and it goes to all our stakeholders. That’s where it is right now, so we’re still looking for input.

“We could get input from the teachers’ association, parents, PACs, principals, vice-principals.”

In the 2015-16 year, there are 182 days in session, with 176 days of instruction and five non-instruction professional development (pro-D) days.

Additionally, there are six—three of which are during the spring break holiday—  alternate calendar days where schools are not in session.

Hours of instruction are broken down as follows: Kindergarten (853 hours), elementary (878 hours) and secondary (952 hours).

On average per day, elementary students will receive four hours and 59 minutes of instruction, while secondary students will receive five hours and 25 minutes.

In addition to regular stat holidays, there is the usual two-week gap at Christmas and spring break where classes won’t be in session.

Shelley Balfour, president of the Cranbrook and District Teachers’ Association, notes that the calendar is still a preliminary schedule that can change.

“We appreciate that the 2015-2016 calendar is compliant with our collective agreement,” said Balfour. “So that’s good news, but we’re always open to making new changes, which will require a letter of understanding to our collective agreement.

“But we’re open to all of that.”

The draft calendar can be viewed on the SD5 website.