Length of School Day
Proposed Action: Enact a DoI exemption for TEC 25.082(a), which defines a school day in terms of a 7-hour day.
- This law restricts the flexibility of campuses to schedule early release or late arrival days that support students and teachers by allowing, for example, additional time for staff development or parent-teacher conferences.
- Currently, TEA requires districts to apply for a waiver for modified (early release or late arrival) days. TEA has stated that it will only grant six such waivers for a district and has encouraged districts to become a DoI in order to have additional flexibility for modified days.
- Consistent with District goals for innovation, personalization and campus autonomy, SBISD campuses should have additional flexibility to develop innovative schedules that support their instructional programs for students while providing opportunities for extended time for educator professional development and team planning.
- Added flexibility in defining the school day removes the barrier of time to enable innovation in personalized student learning experiences, programs and opportunities.
Considerations and Safeguards:
- The District must ensure that campus schedules follow policy regarding instructional time requirements.
- Campuses must follow any calendar events approved as part of the SBISD academic calendar.
- Campus schedules and any late start/early release dates must be approved annually by the Campus CIT, must include parent and staff input prior to adoption, and must be manageable for transportation services.
- Any adjustments to campus schedules and/or calendars must comply with employee contract obligations.
- Parents must be notified well in advance of any changes to the campus schedule and/or calendar.
- Campus school day schedules must be approved by the Superintendent.