An advisory committee studying options for LA Unified’s academic calendar are considering six different plans, and one them is a radically different approach that would shorten the summer break to five weeks and increase the winter break to seven weeks.
In addition, the plan would potentially add a 20-day “winter intersession” for some students to go along with a 20-day summer school session.
An article about the different plans under consideration was posted in the newsletter of the Associated Administrators of Los Angeles (AALA) by Gerardo Loera, principal of Virgil Middle School and a member of the LAUSD Calendar Committee. The committee has been tasked by Superintendent Ramon Cortines to study different calendar options, and based on the committee’s work Cortines is expected to make a formal three-year recommendation to the school board in December.
The plan would “address summer learning loss by shortening the break and reallocating the days to an extended winter break,” Loera wrote. “A four-week summer school and a four-week winter intersession would allow many LAUSD students to experience up to 220 days of instructional time if they attend both 20-day interventions in addition to the 180 day school year.”
He added, “Even if the District couldn’t afford to fund both extended learning opportunities, we’ve mitigated the summer learning loss by decreasing the longest extended vacation period.”
This dramatic overhaul of the schedule, which Loera described as a plan that “completely redesigns the way the District utilizes the 180 school days,” would start classes on Aug. 6 for the 2016-17 school year. It also calls for students that don’t participate in the winter intersession to have a break that begins after Dec. 16 and extends through Feb 6, which adds up to 51 full days off in-between semesters. Classes would end for the year on June 29.