Ad-Express and Daily Iowegian, Centerville, IA

CNHI/Southeast Iowa

January 17, 2014

Spring break to return next year in Oskaloosa

OSKALOOSA — Although sometimes controversial, Oskaloosa students and staff will have a spring break in 2015. That decision came as part of a meeting of the Oskaloosa School Board when they met in regular session Tuesday.

The meeting contained a generally usual agenda, but included a special presentation by Storybook Players and approval of six teachers who have accepted the early retirement package offered by the district.

The board approved a calendar for the 2014-15 school year. While not greatly different than this school year’s calendar, some key changes include the return of spring break. Superintendent Russ Reiter said much conversation has been considered regarding a spring break. He said a group of senior high students made a strong case and gave him a proposal he felt was worth considering.

The group of students proposed a full week break every other year. On the alternate years the district could utilize the long weekend concept in place this school year. Spring break would be March 16-20, 2015, the week following the boy’s state basketball tournament.

School districts can go the traditional 180 days or with a waiver go up to 1,080 hours, said Reiter. Under the proposed calendar, the school year will begin Aug. 18, 2014, and will end on May 22, 2015, just before Memorial Day.

Christmas break will begin on Monday, Dec. 22, with students returning to classes on Monday, Jan. 5, 2015. This will provide a full two weeks of break with Christmas and New Year’s Day falling on Thursday. Early outs would remain on Wednesdays.

Board member Tom Richardson asked about flexibility of Iowa Assessments and the coordination around spring break. Reiter assured that there was flexibility for the grade level buildings to work around the break.

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The Iowegian wants readers to think about the solicitation ordinance that will prevent groups or individuals from entering a roadway to solicit money. The Centerville City Council in June by a 5-0 vote passed the first reading of just such an ordinance. Public pressure and during a subsequent special meeting, the council voted 3-2 to table the ordinance. A second special meeting to discuss the solicitation ordinance is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 7 at City Hall. So, the question of the week is, "Do you or do you not support the ordinance to prevent solicitation of funds in city streets?"

A. I support the ordinance
B. I do not support the ordinance
C. Not sure
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