Washington Community School Board discusses June 7 as last day for students

Students in the Washington Community School District will have a tentative last day of school for the 2018-2019 school year of Friday, June 7, 2019, according to Superintendent Willie Stone. The decision is not official as the board will vote about the finalization at a later date.

At the school board meeting Wednesday night, Stone recommended to the board that the last day of school for students be June 7. This would “wipe off” three days of snow makeup days. Stone said they could take off more days, but in the interest of the education of the students advised against it.

“We want to make sure we’re educating our kids and providing good education,” he said.

He explained there was discussion about adding extra minutes to the school day for 12 days but did not feel this would be worthwhile because it would only add three minutes to each class period and felt that in the middle school setting it was not enough time to make a difference in the quality of their education.

“I would rather us just drop hours than try to make up hours that way because I think those are useless hours,” he said.

With students finishing school on June 7, teachers will be contracted to work until June 17, but Stone proposed forgiving three days of work for them as well and having the last day for staff be June 14.

School Board member Jason Hamilton agreed with this decision, saying he felt the reason for not being in school during the first part of 2019 was “circumstances beyond their control” and felt that the teachers went above and beyond to put in time to help their students.

“For all the hours and times these teachers put in before school, after school and during the summer, they have more than worked three days for free,” he said. “I think maybe forgiving those days might be something to look into.”

The decision will be approved by the board at a later date.

In other news, the board approved the calendar for the 2019-2020 school year. The first day of school will be Friday, Aug. 23, 2019, and the last day of school Wednesday, May 27, 2020. Six snow days have been built into the schedule, with two of them being forgiven by the board and will not need to be made up by students.

The next meeting of the Washington Community School District School Board will be Wednesday, April 10, at 7 p.m.