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2020-21 Calendar Development

Recent News: School Board Approves September 8 as the First Day of School

At their retreat on June 26, the Albemarle County School Board voted to reopen schools on Tuesday, September 8. Details around the opening of schools, including instructional schedules and school bus route information, are expected to be finalized by July 9. The division is anticipating that it will use a hybrid, or blended, model of instruction in which students will receive in-person instruction some days of the week and learn virtually on other days. Specifics will vary by grade level with elementary students likely in school more often than middle and high school students. Parents and guardians will have the option of choosing an all-virtual model for their child.

A draft calendar presenting the September 8 start date was reviewed by the School Board during their meeting on June 18.

“It’s important to note that this year’s calendar will need to be somewhat fluid and will likely undergo additional modifications once the return to school scheduling plan has been adopted,” explained Dr. Patrick McLaughlin, the school division’s Chief of Strategic Planning.

Dr. McLaughlin further noted that the 2020-21 calendar will protect traditional school breaks, including Thanksgiving, Winter Break, and Spring Break, to enable families to make holiday plans. He also pointed out that the final day of school will not be Friday, June 18, 2021, as noted on the draft calendar previously shared with the School Board, as the division will observe the Juneteeth holiday that day. “Our final day of school would likely be earlier that week with the modifications that we may make to the calendar,” said Dr. McLaughlin.

Staff recommended September 8 as the start date for the 2020-21 school year based on a number of factors, including teachers’ desire for additional preparation time; the results of the division’s community survey on the calendar; and the planning of school schedules.

Calendar Survey

2020-21 Calendar Redesign

From June 4-17, ACPS solicited feedback from students, parents, employees, and community members about delaying the start date for the new school year until early September. The proposal had two main goals: (1) allow teachers more time to prepare for the delivery model available at the time of school opening, and (2) allow for Virginia to be in a different phase of reopening. More than 4,800 students, parents, employees, and community members participated in this survey. View survey results »

New Calendar Options

Previous Action Taken on the 2020-21 Calendar

Calendar Approved

At their meeting on January 23, 2020, the School Board approved Draft 2 as the final calendar for the 2020-21 school year:

Calendar Drafts

Draft 2 - drafted Dec. 20, 2019

Based on feedback from our calendar survey, we made the following changes to the initial draft of the 2020-21 school year calendar:

  • We moved the school-based PD day from Monday, March 1, to Monday, February 15, in observance of George Washington’s birthday (a Virginia state holiday; also known as Presidents' Day); and
  • We moved the teacher workday from Tuesday, March 2, to Monday, March 1.

The second draft of the calendar was presented to the School Board on January 9, 2020, for review, and approved by the Board on January 23, 2020.

Draft 1 - drafted Oct. 29, 2019

Calendar Survey: Thank You for Your Feedback

Community feedback is an essential part of the calendar development process. The Calendar Committee launched a public survey to gather feedback on its initial draft of the 2020-21 School Year Calendar from November 13-26, 2019.

The purpose of the calendar survey was to collect input on the Calendar Committee's initial draft of the 2020-21 School Year Calendar. A total of 1,200 students, parents, employees, and community members reviewed Draft 1 and provided feedback over a two-week period, from November 13-26. Thank you to everyone who participated for engaging in the calendar development process.

Overall, nearly 75% of survey respondents indicated that they are satisfied or very satisfied with Draft 1 of the 2020-21 calendar, with fewer than 8% indicating dissatisfaction. View survey results »

Calendar Development Timeline

The following dates are subject to change.

November 2019

  • November 4 | 1st Calendar Committee Meeting
  • November 13 | Post draft calendar and open community survey
  • November 19 | 2nd Calendar Committee Meeting

December 2019

  • Receive calendar feedback from Strategic Cabinet and Planning Cabinet
  • 3rd Calendar Commitee Meeting

January 2020

  • January 9 | Present draft calendar to School Board as Information Item (for review); Receive public comment
  • January 23 | Present draft calendar to School Board as Action Item (for approval)

Reference Materials

2020-21 Calendar - Draft 2

2020-21 Calendar - Draft 1

2019-20 Calendar (approved December 13, 2018)

2019-20 Calendario (en español) (aprobado el 13 de diciembre de 2018)

Each year, the Joint Albemarle County/Charlottesville City Schools Calendar Committee works to produce a school calendar that supports our goals to engage students, improve opportunities and achievement, and get the most productivity out of our resources.

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