A couple of items generated lengthy discussion at last week’s three hour-plus Ball-Chatham Board of Education meeting at the District Office.

Board members unanimously approved the 2019-20 school calendar, which will include a one hour, early release Wednesday each week at all school buildings.

District officials have been studying this move, which is a way to improve teacher collaboration, and, ultimately, student learning, for several years.

In addition, the district’s new book bag/purse policy at Glenwood High School, which was enacted last month as part of several student handbook changes, generated discussion from a number of students, board members and school officials.

School calendar

The first day of student attendance for the 2019-20 school year will be Wednesday, Aug. 14, and the final day of attendance (if no emergency days are used) is Friday, May 22, 2020.

The number of half-day, school improvement days has been cut in half, from eight to four. The Christmas holiday break will run from Dec. 21-Jan. 6 (Jan. 6 is a Teacher Institute Day), and spring break will run from March 21-29.

All discussion about the calendar centered around the early release Wednesdays, which was a focal point in the latest round of teacher contract negotiations.

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