District 51 working with community to draft school calendar

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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO/KJCT) -- School calendars can be a surprisingly hot topic. That's why District 51 is working with the community to draft a schedule that benefits as many people as possible.

"It's really important to discuss the calendar with all aspects of the community -- whether you're a business person or a parent or a student or staff member, because the calendar affects all those people," Emily Shockley, District 51 public information officer, said.

Five days were added to the calendar this year thanks to the bond and mill levy override, but that's not the only part of the schedule that has changed pretty drastically.

"When I saw the school calendar last year, I was shocked because it was so different than the one before," Katherine Freeman, a District 51 parent, said.

Some, like Freeman, are learning to love it: "It's a fabulous schedule right now."

Others say it needs to be more consistent.

"The schedules, especially with early release, confuse both of them (referring to her children) every day," Amanda Erkman, another District 51 parent, said. "I want to be able to get the idea through the school district's head that we need consistency for our children because they work better when they're in a consistent environment."

Whether you like the current schedule or not, parents and the district agree that openly talking about it, a step in the right direction.

"I love the idea that they're doing an open forum," Erkman said.

Monday marked the last open forum to discuss the calendar. The district will now compile the information they've collected and sent out another district-wide survey this winter.

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