Dubuque Schools Consider Two Hourly Calendar Options.

by Katie Wiedemann, Reporter

DUBUQUE, Iowa - Next school year Iowa school districts will have the option to go from a required 180 days in the classroom to 1,080 hours. Every hour will add up.

If a district decides to stick with tallying days, even a two-hour delay would mean a full-school day needs to be made-up.

That's why district officials in Dubuque say the "days" option is not an option. Now they're rolling out two different hourly options and they're asking for public input.

Silence surrounds Hoover Elementary school as the bitter cold kept students away. Inside, Dubuque Schools Superintendent Stan Rheingans is talking about spring break.

Rheingans said, "Spring has been discussed in the district. Some love it, some hate it. "

Shortening spring break is one option to help keep students in the classroom for more hours.

The other option centers around professional development meetings for teachers. Right now those meetings happen during early releases, 10 times each school year.The proposed calendar would move those meeting to Friday mornings.That would mean a one-hour late arrival every Friday.

"we've talked about, should we offer some type of opportunity for parents through the use of opportunities for parents. Through the use of para-professionals and not charge for it. That's certainly an option for us. But then there's the issue still with kids who are on buses, " said Rheingans.

Rheingans says each option would cause some growing pains for everyone involved.

"We're serious about getting public input. Some people believe that, some people may not. But we are, " he said. "We will review every comment. "
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