The North Callaway R-1 School District has decided to move to a four-day school week for the 2017-2018 school year.
North Callaway has around 1200 students in kindergarten through 12 grade. The district asked its parents how they felt about moving to this approach through an online survey with 65.7 percent supporting the change, 21.3 percent undecided and 13 percent against it.
When asked what factors were considered when looking into the four-day school week, Superintendent Dr. Bryan Thomsen stated, “We looked at four factors throughout this process, (1) the impact on student achievement, (2) the financial impact, (3) was it a good fit for our community, and (4) the impact on staff recruitment & retention.” Dr. Thomsen said, “Over the past eight years the State of Missouri has decreased the amount of state funding for our schools. While this decrease has been difficult on our overall budget, we have been able to make adjustments to address these withholdings. Without a decrease in expenditures or an increase in revenue we will be required to make additional adjustments that will have a negative impact on our schools.”
He continued, “Based on our situation and our research a combination of both a levy increase and a four-day school week would put us in the best position to provide the best educational experience for all our students and families.”
The district is currently working on all the details of how they will operate on a day-to-day basis and will continue to inform their stakeholders as they move through this process. The district is anticipating saving around 1 percent ($100,000) of their total yearly budget from moving to a four-day school week.