Thank you for your feedback on our makeup day plan survey! As a reminder, 30 minute extended school day starts this Monday, January 29 and will end March 30, 2018.
Many of you have expressed an interest in seeing a more detailed breakdown and cross-tabs of our survey results. Here they are! In the table below you can see how each stakeholder group – community members, employees, parents, students and principals – voted.
The options were:
- Option 1: Make up the days on February 21-23, during Winter Break
- Option 2: Make up the days on February 19-21, during Winter Break
- Option 3: Make up the days on February 19-20, during Winter Break and the March 19 professional learning day
- Option 4: Make up the days on February 12-23, during Winter Break and the March 19 professional learning day
- Option 5: Extend the school day by 30 minutes from January 29 to March 30
- Option 6: Add 15 minutes to start of the day and 15 minutes to end of the day from January 29 to March 30
The data shows based on the individual options, both Option 5 or 6 were preferred by each stakeholder group. I have heard a lot of you point out that we should not just look at the individual options since you all felt they were just variations of the same thing. I assure you we looked at the numbers based on option type grouping them as ‘making up the days over winter break’ (Options 1-4) and ‘extending the school day by 30 minutes’ (Options 5-6).
Additionally, we received a wide range and variety of comments on the survey. Out of the more than 14,000 responses to the survey, about 3,400 respondents left comments. Our Research and Evaluation team reviewed all of them (Big shout out to Executive Director Michael LaMont and his crew!).
The few high-level takeaways from the comments were:
- Those who selected Options 1-4, which shaved days off of Winter Break and/or scheduled professional development days for teachers and staff, often said they would be okay with any of the four options. This group of respondents were against extending the school day.
- Respondents who chose either Option 5 or 6, also said they would have been fine with either.
- The group of respondents who choose Option 5 or 6 did not want to make up days over a break because of preplanned travel or vacation.
A quarter of all comments suggested no make-up days at all. Also, suggesting an online option was popular among community members and employees but not as much with parents and students. Let me quickly address these areas:
In reference to online and distance learning options, while we are working hard to close the digital divide, unfortunately, many of our families and students do not have digital devices and/or internet service to gain access to assignments and school work. I encourage you to read my previous blog for more details on how we are working with our corporate partners to close the digital divide.
I am proud of how our principals have already been brainstorming with their staff to develop strategies and initiatives that will maximize this extra instructional time at the end of the school day. Some schools will use the extra 30 minutes to target specific needs of specific grade levels. Some schools, particularly on the middle and high school levels, plan to use the extended time as an intervention block. This is time where students receive additional assistance from teachers on assignments and work toward mastery.
I would also like to address the comments received about fall and winter break being unnecessary. The 2017-2019 calendar was decided based on feedback from a community-wide survey and the district-wide calendar committee. Respondents on this survey, also comprised of parents, students, community and staff, had the desire to build additional options for vacation academies into the school schedule. I encourage you all to participate this spring in the survey for the 2019-2020 calendar.
Again, thank you for your participation and your responses! While we all have differing opinions, one thing we agree on is the fact that we want our students to be successful.
I ask you to work with us in being a part of the solution in the best interest of all of our children!
Read my original survey results blog post here.