Mixed reactions to change in Duval school calendar, district pushes back

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — A big change to the last week of school had some parents relieved, but some teachers frustrated. Early dismissal turned into full days.


Duval County Public Schools announced the change last week that May 28th to the 31st would be full days.

“I think it’s a good idea,” Porchea Cunningham, a mother, said. “As a mom of 3 boys? Trying to find daycare that last week of school is really tough and I end up just keeping them home.”

The district said one of its main concerns was parents who struggle to get childcare. “There were also concerns about low attendance on the early release days and the limited time for instruction,” the district said on its website.

Chris Guerrieri, a veteran DCPS teacher, said most grades are already in the book at that point. He and several other teachers were frustrated with the change.

“What meaningful instruction am I going to do that last week? Am I going to quiz it the following week? Should I expect them to remember it for next year when they’re not in my class and probably in a different grade,” he told Action News Jax’s Robert Grant.

He said it would make more sense to move testing to the last week of school since most students are already checked out at that point in the school year.

The district told Action News Jax the calendar committee is composed of a diverse group that includes teacher’s union, teachers, principals, parents, district administrators, and community partners.

Guerrieri argued more feedback should’ve been considered first.

The recommendation from the calendar committee was approved during a school board meeting earlier this month.

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