A Word From Principal Callin
First day of school is Thursday, Aug. 27
The first day of the 2015-16 school year is Thursday, Aug. 27 for students in first through 12th grade. For kindergarteners, the first day is Tuesday, Sept.
1. The PPS school year calendar is determined with direction from the school board. A calendar committee, composed of program administrators, principals, teachers, staff and parents, recommends a calendar to the school board. The school board then discusses and votes on the calendar. The 2014-15 and the 2015-16 calendars were set in spring 2014.
School begins Thursday, Aug. 27 for 1st-12th grades because:
Labor Day falls late this year - Sept. 7 - too late to begin school after the holiday. The school board and the calendar committee prioritized more instructional days at the start – rather than at the end - of the year. The reason was to provide as much instruction before seniors take IB and AP exams (advanced coursework exams for college credit) and prior to annual spring testing for grades 3-8 and 11.
Other considerations included:
1. Two days added: The new contract agreement between PPS and the Portland Association of Teachers (the teachers’ union) added two more instructional days to the school year.
2. Kindergarten assessment: Three days are needed for kindergarten assessments before kindergartners start school. The committee wanted kindergartners to have a solid first week of school prior to the three-day Labor Day weekend.
Taken together, these considerations meant starting school Thursday, Aug. 27 (1st-12th grades). Kindergarten assessments will be held Aug. 27, 28 and 31.