Students at GES

For nearly 10 years, our school division has explored potential options to challenge some of the traditions associated with the structure of our instructional calendar.  Since March 2021, our school division has rejuvenated this discussion as we sought to reconsider the variables of time, location, and opportunity for learning, all in an effort to fulfill our division’s mission to maximize the potential of every learner.  We held over 25 meetings virtually and in person with parents, students, employees, and members of our community.  Many informal conversations also took place at school and community events.  In addition to these conversations, our division distributed two separate surveys to gather additional data.  Our division superintendent, Dr. Raley, has reviewed and analyzed all of these qualitative and quantitative data.

Ultimately, a school division’s instructional calendar should be structured to align with its instructional objectives.  While prioritizing instruction, it is important to recognize that a school division’s calendar can also have an impact on the personal and professional schedules of students, staff, and families.  School calendars have far reaching implications in many ways.

For the 2022-2023 school year, Dr. Raley will recommend that our school division follow the instructional calendar that was adopted by the Goochland County School Board on December 10, 2019.  Next year’s calendar will follow the same structure as the calendar our school division has been following for the past several years.

Discussions regarding the potential for a balanced instructional calendar for the 2023-2024 school year and beyond will continue.  Providing our students with additional instructional opportunities, coupled with the mental and physical health benefits of periodic breaks throughout the year, has the potential to positively impact students and staff in significant ways.  There are still some unanswered questions regarding intersessions that need to be reviewed and clarified.  Dr. Raley expects to provide more information to the School Board early in 2022.

The School Board will meet to discuss our instructional calendar further on November 9 at 6:00 p.m. in Room 250 of the Goochland County Administration Building (agenda).  Their meeting will also be streamed live at this link.