2022-2023 and 2023-2024 academic calendars approved

Calendars for the 2022-23 and 2023-24 school years were approved by the Ames School Board on Monday, March 7, 2022. This year, the board approved two calendars developed by a 21-member Calendar Committee with the intent to continue to approve two academic school calendars each year continuously.

Calendar Committee – The proposed schedules were developed by a committee comprised of district administration, teachers, community members, union leaders, parents, students, and building leaders, and led by the assistant superintendent, Dr Jeff Hawkins. Over the course of several months, the committee drafted 5 distinct calendar options based on identified priorities, including two weeks of winter vacation, identification of key religious observances, alignment of staff professional development days across the district and a longer summer break, among others. .

The approved schedule maximized committee priorities and expands the pre-service schedule for teachers, including the addition of the Little Cyclone Teacher Academy, an optional in-service teacher education opportunity. The teaching day is consistent across all buildings with 6 hours and 35 minutes of teaching per day. This adds up to 1,120 hours of instruction with a relatively even distribution between semesters.

Start date – School will officially start on Wednesday August 24, 2022, for most classes in the district. This includes 1st through 5th graders, as well as 6th graders and all other middle school students who are new to the district. This is also the start date for all of Ames High School. For the past few years, this has been an orientation day for freshmen, but with the new high school, all classes at Ames High School will begin that day.

Here is a breakdown of the staggered start dates in the district:

  • August 24 – Grades 1-5. Orientation for 6th grade and all AMS students new to the district, as well as all Ames High students.
  • August 25 – Classes begin for all EK-12 years
  • September 6 – Preschool

Other dates to highlight:

  • November 24 – 25 – Thanksgiving Break (early layoff November 23)
  • December 21 – January 3 – winter holidays (classes resume January 4)
  • January 17 – Dr. Martin Luther King Day (no class)
  • March 13 to 17 – Spring break
  • May 28 – Start of Ames High
  • May 31 – Last day of classes

Professional Development / Teacher Work Days

Professional development days will be aligned across the district beginning in the 2022-23 school year. Elementary schools will no longer have the weekly Wednesday morning schedule.

Parent-teacher conferences

The Calendar Committee will then review the Parent/Teacher Conference schedule and how best to utilize these opportunities. The calendar currently indicates that they will take place in November and March, but the details are yet to be determined.

Start and end times

One of the next notable tasks that will result from the work of the calendar committee is to determine if any potential adjustments to start and stop times in our district will be adjusted for next year. Since the length of the school day changes slightly in elementary and secondary, the start and end times must be adjusted. This presents an opportunity to determine if now is the time to make changes to the order of start and end times for primary and secondary. We plan to share a more detailed proposal after Spring Break with our community before a decision is made.

Below is the district calendar at a glance in PDF format which can be downloaded and printed.

https://www.ames.k12.ia.us/wp-content/uploads/2021/04/2021-2022-District-Calendar.pdf

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