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Chappaqua Schools Propose Half Days for 2012-13

CHAPPAQUA, N.Y. – Five early dismissal days have been proposed to the Chappaqua Central School District’s 2012-13 school calendar, according to Assistant Superintendent Eric Byrne.

“We’ve been working on the calendar for next year’s early dismissal days and we’re trying to identify days that would support the training for the new teacher evaluation system,” Byrne said.

The days identified by Byrne to perform staff development and hold elementary school conferences were Friday, Oct. 5, Friday, Nov. 16, Wednesday Nov. 21, Wednesday Dec. 5 and Wednesday, March 6.

Board of education members wondered if all of the early dismissal days could be shifted to Friday, believing a half-day in the middle of week is more disruptive than having it on the weekend.

Douglas G. Grafflin Principal Michael Kirsch said the reason half-days cannot always be on Mondays or Fridays is to not take away the same classes over and over from the teachers and the students.

“If you’re an art teacher, your Monday class is disadvantaged because of all the Mondays we’ve lost,” Kirsch said, who had met with a scheduling expert earlier in the day.

Superintendent Lyn McKay said the district had also hoped to return an unused snow day to the 2011-12 calendar the Friday before Memorial Day weekend, but said too many classes had field trips or tests already planned.

“What we can do for next year is identify a day ahead and say, ‘Should we have extra snow days, say, the day before Memorial Day?’” McKay said. “That certainly is an option going forward.”

While there is no official deadline to approve the early dismissal days, the district would like to finalize it before July in order to print its 2012-13 calendars.

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