Board of Education to Apply for Waiver for 2017-2018 School Year Start Date

October 10, 2016

If approved, the school year would begin on August 28, 2017 and end on June 14, 2018.

The Board of Education (Board) approved a resolution at its October 10, 2016, business meeting stating its preference to adopt a calendar for the 2017-2018 school year that would begin prior to Labor Day, contingent upon a waiver approval from the Maryland State Board of Education.  The school year would begin on Monday, August 28, 2017, and would end on Thursday, June 14, 2018, if the waiver is granted.

In August, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan issued an executive order that mandates all Maryland public schools start after Labor Day, conclude by June 15, and include 180 days of instruction. The Board has asked Superintendent Jack R. Smith to apply to the State Board for a waiver of the start date before Labor Day. Governor Hogan’s executive order provided school districts with the option of applying for a waiver.

The Board’s Policy Management Committee met on September 20, 2016, to review the draft 2017–2018 School Year Calendar and recommended that three calendar scenarios be presented to the full Board for consideration. The scenarios were posted on the MCPS website for public information and review. Hundreds of parents, staff and community members provided feedback on the calendar options.

The Board’s preferred school calendar option is based on 184 instructional days for students (four more than the minimum required by the state of Maryland). The calendar was developed in partnership with the Montgomery County Council of PTAs, the school district’s three employee associations, and the Montgomery County Region of the Maryland Association of Student Councils, as well as other community members and school system leadership.

The Board believes that this calendar option helps meet the district’s operational, labor relations, and instructional objectives, including, but not limited to: sufficient instructional time for students; reduced loss of learning during an extended summer period; opportunity to preserve instructional time in the event schools are closed for emergencies; essential professional development opportunities for teachers and other school employees; and effective coordination with educational partners for dually enrolled students.

The Board is continuing to explore options for implementing a school year calendar that would begin after Labor Day and end by June 15, 2018, in the event that the State Board does not approve the requested waiver.


Read the memo to the Board and see the proposed calendar (option 3A)



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