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Richmond (Va.) board decides not to extend school calendar for 2021-22

March 16, 2021
The superintendent had proposed seven additional weeks of instruction for students who need extra learning time.

The Richmond (Va.) school board has decided not to move forward with Superintendent Jason Kamras’ recommendation to have an extended schedule for the coming school year.

WWBT-TV reports that the board wants more time to collect data and get the public’s input about the proposal.

The decision came about five hours into a virtual meeting Monday night.

The 2021-22 school year will begin with a traditional calendar on Sept. 7, 2021.

Although the superintendent's proposal has been referred to as “year-round school,” it technically isn’t. But the idea does add about seven weeks to the school calendar for students who may need that extra learning time the most.

The district says about 5,000 students fall in that category.

Those extra seven weeks are completely optional, so no student or teacher has to agree to the extra classroom time. But teachers who agree to it would get some $10,000 added on to their paychecks.

The board’s student representative told the board that students have had to endure too many changes because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

"I think this proposal will help those students who are in need of educational support," Armstrong High student Airhiez Cabrera said. "A lot more hands-on learning will be involved, including the increased opportunity for extra help and study...However, it is not a choice I can stand by. We, as a district, have experienced enough change in the past year. To add another drastic change could add to an already growing uncertainty about our future. I say enough change for the time being,”

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