Next Generation School Calendar – A Superintendent’s Perspective

nk3Last June, the FWSU blog first publicized the concept of Calendar 2.0 for our school community. The proposed calendar was put forward by the Champlain Valley Superintendents Association (CVSA) to spur fresh discourse and thinking on new ways to look at our current system. Since that time this proposal has rightly received much attention and has emerged as a topic of discussion within our communities. The plan represents a shift from what is probably comfortable for many of us.

Our current calendar, which is widely used throughout Vermont, has remained the same for the past century. Although uncertain exactly when it was first implemented, from what we understand our existing schedule is close to a hundred years old (if not older). There are aspects of the calendar that are working very well, but others that are not. As a parent and as an educator, I deeply appreciate both sides of the current conversation.

As a Superintendent serving on the CVSA, I can assure you that we are committed to making sure that our schools exemplify the very best learning environment possible for all of our students and families. We are committed, in collaboration with the Vermont School Boards Association and the Vermont Superintendents Association, to developing and delivering a truly world-class educational experience for every child. Continuing to do this work within the confines of our century-old model presents many challenges – and some obstacles to be perfectly candid. The world of today is remarkably different from it was a hundred years ago. Opening a community-wide conversation about how we will educate students in the digital age makes sense. Part of beginning that discussion is to ask, “What could the next generation school calendar look like?”

Please take a few moments to review the posted information about Calendar 2.0. The website has details that will allow you to begin thinking about what is possible.

If you are interested in contributing to these important discussions, CVSA will be holding four regional meetings. It is a great opportunity to engage in meaningful community dialogue on the educational future of our students.

  • Wednesday, Oct. 2, 6:30 p.m. – Essex High School
  • Thursday, Oct. 3, 6:30 p.m. – BFA St. Albans
  • Wednesday, Oct. 9, 6:30 p.m. – Burlington High School
  • Thursday, Oct. 10, 6:30 p.m. – Champlain Valley Union High School

As I stated in June, this is only the beginning of the discussion in our region. The next generation calendar is, and always has been, an ongoing conversation. If you have any questions regarding the next generation school calendar, I invite you to contact me at nkirsch@fwsu.org.

Ned KirschSuperintendent

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