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Paducah schools approve final changes to calendar

BY KATHLEEN FOX kfox@paducahsun.com

After a winter season filled with an inordinate amount of snow days, Paducah schools have amended the district's calendar for the final time.

The Paducah Public Schools board met Monday night. It approved changes that note the additional four canceled days from March 3 to March 6 due to inclement weather as closed, weather days rather than instructional days.

Kentucky House and Senate negotiators agreed in late March to suspend the state law requiring school districts to have 170 days of classes, as long as they have at least 1,062 hours of classroom instruction. Paducah students missed 15 days during the school year.

The legislation allows the district to roll back the final day of school from June 3 to May 29, for students. The closing day for staff members will be May 30 but some could be required to attend additional days to fulfill their contracts. Paducah Tilghman High School graduation is set for Saturday night, May 31, according to Superintendent Randy Greene.

He said the district benefited from the added flexibility earned by extending the school day 15 minutes beginning Feb. 24 through the end of the year.

In other meeting business, the board approved a new certified evaluation plan presented by Assistant Superintendent Donald Shively. The new procedure, which alters the evaluation methods for certified teachers, will apply in the 2015 fiscal year but the district has begun a pilot program at some schools. The new evaluation includes a rating of teachers by their students.

Shively also presented the preliminary college and career readiness numbers for the 2014 Paducah Tilghman graduating class. Of the 175 seniors, 61 percent meet the benchmarks for college or career readiness or both. He said the district hopes to reach 70 percent by the end of the school year, an increase from the 67 percent last year. The district is also awaiting final ACT scores from the make-up day and its students at Gatton Academy and will present the final scores at the May meeting.

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

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