CENTER — Following a survey conducted last month online, 80 percent of parents and others responding have approved a proposition by Center Schools to go to a four–day school week beginning next school year and 20 percent are opposed.
Following a meeting on the proposed change Tuesday evening that included a roundtable discussion, Center Schools Superintendent Chris Vance reported that no one attended who opposed the four-day week, but said the school board will continue to study the situation at its April 11 meeting.
The school board must apply for a change in the school week by May 12.
“This is a big decision for us as a community to make,” Vance wrote on his Viking Super Blog. “There are many factors to consider and we always want what is best for our students and our community.”
Given the overall support, Vance says he feels there is a good chance the four-day week will pass community muster.
Vance wrote the following for the introduction to the survey that first proposed the change:
“At present there are 14 public school districts in the San Luis Valley. As it stands right now, by the end of this school year, 12 out of the 14 school districts will be on a four-day week. Alamosa and Center will be the two districts remaining as a five-day week.
“As the district superintendent, I have been involved in many conversations as to the benefits and drawbacks concerning the four-day versus five-day school week. Knowing that just recently two school districts have made the adjustment with their calendars, I feel it necessary to reach out to all of our stakeholders to see what is most beneficial for our community and our students. This long-standing debate truly comes down to what is best for us as a community.
“In four-day school week, student contact time will remain the same. This means the length of each school day must be extended to ensure we have the same amount of contact time with students. Most four-day schools end the school day at 4 p.m.