Why school districts are in session on a holiday

Many across the Panhandle observed Presidents Day Monday. In fact, banks and businesses were closed. However, the same could not be said about some schools, which have many parents wondering why and what goes into deciding a districts calendar.

Statewide school districts do have to follow a few rules set forth by the states, like allowing two snow days and staff development days.

"What goes into the calendar itself is we are mandated by the state to start no earlier than the 4th Monday of the month in August. Our committees have never liked going to June so we try to go to the last Friday in May," said Bushland ISD Superintendent, Don Wood.

Those committees for Bushland ISD are set at a campus level. Once they approve a calendar, it's passed to the administrative level and then the school board votes on it.

"We kind of wait a little bit to see what Amarillo does. We look at their calendar and try to coordinate the calendars as best as we can and still keep our ideas and our community first and foremost as a priority, " said Wood.

Bushand and Amarillo ISD's held classes Monday. Wood said for school districts it's a give and take of trying to make their community happy. For example, both districts allow two weeks off for Christmas break, however, Canyon ISD students had to return sooner.

"We felt like Good Friday was the day we wanted to keep. We also wanted to keep Memorial Day, Labor Day as holidays," said Wood.

Canyon and Bushland ISD do have 177 instructional days scheduled. However, our calls to Amarillo ISD went unanswered. There's also a misconception that Amarillo ISD will let students out later this year in June. But looking at their calendar, along with many area districts, school ends on May 30th.

So Pronews 7 asked parents what they think on Facebook. Should districts all use one calendar? To weigh in on that conversation or view what others have said, click here.