A proposed calendar for Prince William County Public Schools would have classes beginning on Tuesday, Aug. 25, nearly two weeks before Labor Day.
This year, school began Aug. 26, just one week before Labor Day on Sept. 2. In 2020, the holiday that signals the end to summer fun won’t be until Sept. 7.
The school board will consider the proposed calendar for the 2020-21 school year at the board’s regular meeting at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 16, at the Kelly Leadership Center.
Similar to the length of the breaks on the calendar this school year, winter break in 2021 would be for two weeks from Dec. 21 to Jan. 1, and Spring Break would be from March 29 to April 2.
The last day of school is proposed to be Friday, June 11. Schools are expected to be closed on Tuesday, Nov. 3, for 2020 elections, but teachers would have a virtual work day.
Jennifer Coyne Cassata, the school division’s director of the office of accountability, told the school board at its meeting Oct. 2 that the other two options considered were starting school on Aug. 31 and ending school June 18 or starting school after Labor Day on Sept. 8 and ending the school year June 25.
The school division’s calendar committee developed the three proposed options, which were narrowed down to one to present to the board. The committee asked for input via an online poll.
The school division received more than 3,300 responses to two polls, one in July and one in August. Parents, staff and students responded to the polls and 79% ranked the proposed option as their first or second choice, according to staff.
Earlier this year, the Virginia General Assembly passed legislation that allows school division to begin the school year prior to Labor Day without needing to seek a waiver. The law requires a four-day weekend for students starting school before Labor Day.
Those interested in sharing their comments on the proposed calendar can speak at the school board meeting or can email the school board members, said Diana Gulotta, the school division’s spokesperson. School board members’ email addresses are available online at https://pwcs.edu/Leadership/school_board.