Stamford Adds School For Students On Election Day

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Danette Melchionne is one of several parents who is unhappy that the Stamford schools are keeping a February break in next year's calendar. Photo Credit: Anthony Buzzeo

STAMFORD, Conn. — Stamford students will be heading to school next Election Day, the Board of Education decided Tuesday when it approved its calendar for the upcoming year.

Election Day, which has previously been a day off for kids, will open on a delayed start for students. Teachers will have a professional development day beforehand.

Students will also be off on the Mondays after the February and April breaks, while staff will come in for development those days. No half-days will be held on professional development days.

Orientation for kids entering kindergarten, sixth grade and ninth grade will take place Aug. 26, the same day as the other students. In previous years, students in those grades had an orientation day before the official first day.

The last day of school is scheduled for June 20, including five bad weather days. If no days are lost to weather, school will end June 13.

Parents were upset that the Board of Education kept the February break in the school’s calendar, especially after they, along with teachers and administrators, had said they would favor giving up the break.

“Do you know how annoying it is when you give your opinion and the opposite is done?” Marcella Branca, a parent at Julia A. Stark Elementary School, said during the board’s public hearing time. The calendar should reflect the majority opinion, she said.

“That’s a working parents' nightmare,” said Danette Melchionne, a parent at K.T. Murphy Elementary School. Both parents work in many families, she said, and she uses all of her vacation time to care for her kids during the breaks. “You’re not listening,” Melchionne said.

Regan Allan, who had four children in the public schools, said she is in favor of having more instructional time before the state's standardized tests in March. Now, the schools will have even more time off in February, she said.

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