Northborough supports old school calendar model; Southborough to discuss Wednesday

Next week, Southborough School Committee will discuss the the school calendar for 2014-15. Likely to be included in the discussion is Northborough School Committee’s position to keep religious holidays and start school in August.

In December, Superintendent Charles Gobron presented his calendar committee’s proposal to eliminate religious holidays from next year’s school calendar. On Wednesday, the Southborough School Committee will hold its first official discussion of that proposal as an individual committee.

At a January 29th meeting combined committee meeting, Gobron explained the proposal.

Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur and Good Friday would be eliminated from the list of school holidays. Students would be allowed to take those days off for religious observance. In respect of religion, coaches and teachers would be advised not to hold tests or matches on those dates. Those changes would have allowed school to begin on September 2nd.

Several members of the community attended to protest the change as a sign of disrespect to religion. At that meeting, the committees decided to discuss the matter as individual committees before voting in a combined meeting.

According to The Metrowest Daily News, Northborough’s K-8 School Committee is against making the change. As a result, Gobron advised changing the school start date back to the end of August:

“When we go very late in June, it creates more problems than people realize,” Superintendent Charles Gobron said, citing hot temperatures and challenges posed by the June 30 end to the fiscal year. . .

Northborough is the first committee to publicly discuss the topic since the late January meeting. None of the members said they had a problem with moving the start of school back to August, and Chairwoman Patricia Kress asked Gobron to inform the other committees of their position.

All three committees will ultimately have to vote on their own calendar separately before June.

To read MWDN’s full article, click here.

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