Thursday, 14 March 2013 09:15

PRSD students in class more next school year

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The number of days students are in the classroom in Prairie Rose School Division (PRSD) will increase next year.

PRSD board trustees approved the school calendar for the 2013-14 school year at the March 12 regular meeting.
It increases instructional days by three the next school year to 188 from the current 185. The reduction in days was done for this school year to help save some transportation costs and it introduced school improvement days for staff.
There will be early dismissal every other Friday in the next school year. The cost of the increased instructional time is about $90,000 for the school year because of transportation costs, said superintendent Doug Nicholls.
He added there was input received from the schools and parent councils about the calendar and that feedback has been mainly positive about early dismissal on Fridays.
“I believe this is a better balance between what is equitable (and) what can work,” said Trustee Arnold Frank. “Our students will benefit from more time in front of teachers.” 
In the 2013-14 school year, school for students is slated to start Aug. 28 and the last day of classes for students will be June 26. Classes will run until Dec. 20 before taking the Christmas break until Jan. 6, 2014. Easter break will begin April 18, 2014 with students returning to class April 28, 2014.
There will be four School Improvement days, all falling on Fridays. They have been held on Mondays this school year.
These are days where students don’t attend school, but school staff are expected to engage in some kind of professional development activity.
Teacherage rental rates
PRSD still oversees a few units rented by teachers throughout the division. In year’s past there hasn’t been a regular review of rental rates, pointed out Pat Cocks, secretary treasurer.
“We have to keep our rates somewhat competitive to market value,” she added.
To that end, the board agreed to raise teacherage rental rates by one per cent, effective September of this year.
“I would support this. It’s just good business,” said Trustee Georgine Westgard.
Returning officer
Trustee elections are slated to be held this fall so the board appointed Val Miller as returning officer for Prairie Rose.
“She’s done (the returning officer job) since regionalization so she’s familiar with the process,” said Cocks. “It works out well for us.”

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Rose Sanchez

Assistant Managing Editor

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