Final(s) Destination

New state law forces changes to Parkway Calendar


The Parkway Calendar for the 2020-2021 School Year.

Amari Sewer, Staff Reporter

On July 11, Governor Parsons signed a new bill which prevents schools from starting school more than 14 days before Labor Day. The law was created due to the drop in tourism when school starts in early August. This forced the district to make some changes to the 2020-21 calendar.

On the updated calendar, Parkway schools will start on Aug. 24, 2020, and school will end on June 3, 2021. 

Also, first semester finals will occur after winter break instead of beforehand. Winter break will start on Dec. 23 2020 and end on Jan. 4 2021. After the break, first semester classes will continue from Jan. 5-11, 2020. Then, finals will take place from Jan. 12-14, 2021.  This change will allow for both the first and second semesters to balance out more than previous years. 

Parkway Central math teacher Nathan Wilson believes that the revised calendar is going to take some time to get used to for both students and staff.

“They [Parkway District] probably did the best they could. I think it’s a change for everybody,” Wilson said. 

Although the changes to the calendar will affect everyone, the students will have a harder time adjusting to the changes than the teachers. The hardest change to adjust to will be taking their finals after Christmas. Junior Makayla Morton believes that the change will affect how she spends her break.

“I think it’s weird that finals are after winter break because I use winter break to chill, and I don’t want to study on winter break, but I’ll be able to adjust definitely,” Morton said.

Another change starting next year includes the entire district moving from late starts to only having early release days next school year. Parkway School District Chief Communications Officer Paul Tandy explained that late start to early release change wasn’t due to the new state law but made in response to Parkway family preferences.

 “ The decision to switch from late starts to early release was based on a survey taken in December of 2018. Early releases were added in place of late starts when the original 2020-21 calendar was approved in the spring of 2018.When the calendar was revised this fall based on the new state law, early releases were kept based on the previous calendar survey,” Tandy said.

Early releases will occur once a month, with the exception of August and June, on Wednesdays.