Our View: Plymouth looks ahead to next school calendar

Published on Monday, 27 November 2017 19:39
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The Plymouth Board of Education has set its 2018-19 calendar and there’s a lot to like in it.

First, they had given themselves a goal of getting the job done by December and they managed the task by November.

Why the rush? As Superintendent Martin Semmel explained, “Our parents know well in advance when the kids would be off and when they can request time off from work.”

Since so many parents work and the moms and dads of younger children must find childcare coverage when school’s out, this gives them time to plan and to negotiate with their employer about vacations and holidays.

Second, school will be in session on Veterans Day whenever it falls on a weekday. We applaud this idea because it offers the opportunity for a teachable moment; that is, the district will use the day to explain the important role played by the men and women who have served our country - information the children are unlikely to get if they are sitting at home.

“Our plan,” Semmel added, “would be to work with the American Legion to talk about things we could do at all four schools to honor our veterans.”

Frankly, we think this make sense on other holidays, too, including Martin Luther King Day and Columbus Day. The date on the calendar offers an opportunity to delve into history - and one less headache for parents of younger children.

The fact is, the needs of modern families have changed a great deal in the past few decades, even as the school curriculum has become more demanding. We’re glad to see that these school leaders have recognized the new realities.

Posted in New Britain Herald, Editorials on Monday, 27 November 2017 19:39. Updated: Monday, 27 November 2017 19:41.