Vote on 2024-2025 Academic Calendar tabled until Feb. 5

Academic Calendar 2024 25 8.5x11 no phone 11JOHNSTON, Ia. (Jan. 22, 2024) — The Johnston Board of Education on Monday night tabled the vote on the 2024-2025 Academic Calendar, noting they’d like additional time for communication about the proposal. 

See the action at 59:47 on this video

View the proposed 2024-2025 Academic Calendar here.

Postponement of a decision on the 2024-2025 Academic Calendar followed a public hearing on the calendar that no one attended. However, some took to social media and email in advance of the board meeting to express dislike for starting the school year on a Friday with a three-hour early out, and also returning from winter break on a Friday.  

Superintendent Dr. Nikki Roorda explained that Aug. 23, 2024 is the first day that schools are allowed by state law to begin the school year. Starting later would push the end of the school year into June. She noted that the Iowa Legislature might eventually choose to allow an earlier start date, and if so, JCSD administration would return to the school board with an updated calendar. 

The proposed 2024-25 Academic Calendar continues a practice that began this year which eliminated early-out Wednesdays and replaced them with full-day professional development days spread throughout the year. Some teachers advocated for the change, saying they would get more benefit from full-day professional development days, instead of one hour after school each Wednesday. 

The district’s KTC child care program is expected to be available on these days for families who register in advance.

The calendar also includes a “Fall Break” on Oct. 14, 2024, as well as an extra day of winter break on Jan. 2, 2025, when staff will return for professional development. Fall conferences were pushed back one week to avoid a conflict with the November 5, 2024 General Election.

The most updated Academic Calendars can be found on the district’s website at Academic Calendars.