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Paducah school board discusses calendar changes

BY KATHLEEN FOX kfox@paducahsun.com

Attendees of the Paducah Public Schools board meeting on Monday saw some unfamiliar faces sitting on the council as students from across the district took control of the meeting.

Ten elementary, middle and high school students in the Bobby L. Jones Future School Board Members program led the meeting to learn about proper parliamentary procedure and leadership skills. The board heard information about several potential tweaks to the semester calendar and next year's preliminary budget.

Troy Brock, director of pupil personnel, said the district could consider exercising the option in bill 211, passed by the Senate on Monday, that would allow districts to deviate from the 170 mandated instructional days due to a high number of snow days this winter.

The measure would local school boards to submit revised calendars to the state education commissioner for approval. The House passed a similar bill last week that would allow districts to waive up to 10 missed days. The legislation now goes back to the House and then would go to Gov. Steve Beshear for approval.

Brock said if the measure is approved this week, the board could consider adding 17 minutes to each day, which would bring the total to 32 minutes after 15 minutes were added on Feb. 24. The change would allow the district to move the last day back from June 2 to May 30, with graduation then set for May 31, and still meet the 1,062 instructional time requirement. An amended calendar would be brought to the board for approval at the next meeting.

Assistant Superintendent Donald Shively presented a preliminary budge, that would add an additional teacher and librarian at Paducah Tilghman High School, one teacher at Paducah Middle School, and one or two teachers at McNabb Elementary School. The librarian would return to Tilghman due to the district decision to end participation in the Commonwealth Middle College beginning in the 2014-2015 school year.

Contact Kathleen Fox, a Paducah Sun staff writer, at 270-575-8651 or follow @kathleendfox on Twitter.

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