What is a traditional school calendar?
In our opinion, a traditional school calendar is a calendar in which academic instruction begins in late-August or early-September and ends in late-May or the beginning of June.
Isn’t the traditional calendar also referred to as the "agrarian calendar"?
Mistakenly, proponents of year-round school calendars usually refer to the traditional calendar as the agrarian calendar. Research by Dr. Kenneth Gold, City University of New York, showed that the calendar most commonly used during agrarian times was the year-round school calendar of today and that the traditional calendar was ushered in with urbanization.
Why does Save Tennessee Summers care about saving the summer?
in other states has shown us that the calendar configuration does not
impact academic success, but can increase non-instructional costs. This
means less of our taxpayer dollars goes into classroom instruction and
teacher salaries. We care about keeping our kids out of school in the
summer because summer not only is the hottest time to cool our schools,
but we understand it is much easier for families to find quality child
care during summer months.
Doesn’t the earlier school start date mean our children are receiving more days of instruction?
Regardless of the school calendar, our children receive the same number of instructional days – as mandated by our legislature. The only difference is many schools have created a bloated school calendar by adding many one and two day holidays into the school year. This adds more days from the first day of school to the last, but doesn’t add one moment of instructional time to the mix
Wouldn’t a later school start date require administering end-of-semester exams after the winter break?
Post Labor Day and late-August school start dates often necessitate
ending the first semester after the winter break. There is no academic
detriment that has been shown for schools ending the first semester
after the winter break. Actually, the majority of the top 10 academic
states in the nation, according to four different ranking systems, began
the school year in late-August or early-September and administered end-of-semester
exams after the winter break.
If we began the school year later, wouldn’t we simply be shifting the August school days for school days in June?
If the days were simply swapped, yes. But….if we reduced the number of one and two-day holidays and compacted the school year we could start later and end earlier.
Would a more compact school year decrease teacher pay?
No.Teachers would still be teaching the same number of days. The only difference would be how the holidays were scheduled into the calendar year.
How would it be more cost effective to operate under a traditional school calendar?
is typically one of the two hottest months of the year. If we removed
the need to cool the schools, with students in the classrooms, during
this time our non-instructional costs would be reduced. It is not as
expensive to cool schools in May and June – due to demand and
I’m just one parent, what can I do to make a change to my schools’ calendar?
Ask how much it
costs to cool the school on a daily basis in August. Suggest that moving
the start date back a week or so will save money and thus allow more
money to follow into classrooms and teacher supplies.
Enlist the help
of other parents by starting a petition drive or simply talking to your
neighbors and friends.
Don’t sit back and expect someone else to fight for what is right for your child. Most importantly, become involved. Volunteering at your child’s school not only emphasizes the importance of education, but allows you to better understand the needs of the school. Remember, everyone has the best interest of the child at heart…we just sometimes disagree about the best calendar approach.