Wilton Parents Not Happy About Possible School Vacation Losses

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Some Wilton parents are worried about possibly losing vacation due to pending schedule changes brought on by Hurricane Sandy.
Some Wilton parents are worried about possibly losing vacation due to pending schedule changes brought on by Hurricane Sandy. Photo Credit: Melvin Mason

WILTON, Conn. – The way Claire Craven sees it, Wilton families should not have to lose vacation time because of Hurricane Sandy.

Craven, who has three children in Wilton High School, said the Wilton Board of Education should investigate other options besides cutting into scheduled vacations and having the school year conclude as late as June 21.

“I have found that when you add days, they’re not productive days. They’re added for the sake of reaching a number,” she said.

The school board is reviewing several options presented by Superintendent Gary Richards to maintain the minimum school year. The board is expected to amend the calendar at its Nov. 20 meeting.

Craven, vice president of the Wilton High Parent-Teacher Association, thinks the district should ask the state about not having classes for the minimum 180 days because the town and state was under a state of emergency during Sandy. Craven thinks the district can be creative and examine alternatives, including putting some lessons online.

“Those families who take vacation will take them anyway and the kids who go will miss time,” Craven said. “It seems kind of silly to take away (vacation) days and require them to go to school when they’ll be gone anyway.”

Maggie Dobbins, president of the Wilton High PTA, said the district should have built the weather days into the schedule so, if all the days were not used, the school year could end sooner.

Dobbins said, however, if she could choose from one of the three options the administration has offered, she’d choose the one that takes three days away from the February break. She plans to talk with other Wilton High parents about schedule adjustments at the PTA’s next meeting.

”They don’t need another week off in February and it would help the teachers with consistency,” said Dobbins, who added that she would prefer the school year not end on June 21.

Are you worried about how the Wilton Public Schools schedule will change? Would you prefer a longer school year or reductions to the February and April breaks? Let us know by leaving a comment below. You can also comment on our Facebook page.

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Asking the state to waive the 180 day requirement is a waste of effort and time. The comment that, "Those families who take vacation will take them anyway and the kids will go will miss time," is unfortunate but not insurmountable. This parent is basically saying that if some kids will not go, all children should be denied those education days since no days are going to be acceptable. This is a ridiculous stand. My children will go to school, and guess what, I will reschedule any vacation that overlaps with classroom time. It depends what is important for a family.

We would prefer the February break be taken. not everyone can afford to go away on vacation and April allows us to take time off as a family when the weather is pleasant here in the NE. The state will most likely not change policy on the 180 days. they didn't last year for Irene, I don't think they will now.

We would prefer to lose days in the April break and keep the February break intact. Students enrolled in AP courses will be preparing for the May exam, and the class time during the April break will be much more productive closer to the exam. The same holds true for the SAT subject test preparation for the May SAT. Many students involved in Spring sports are required to spend the week practicing and aren't able to travel during the April break anyway.