The Woodward News

Local News

August 15, 2012

School board OKs flex day

Woodward, Okla. — The Woodward Board of Education members visited with the local principals in depth during their monthly meeting on Monday about the scheduling of a district-wide flex day .

According to Superintendent Tim Merchant, the flex day is necessary for teachers to be able to communicate and discuss the new requirements for the common core curriculum.

"It has become more evident that we have to have time for our teachers to meet with each other to get the curriculum set for this new program (common core)," Merchant said. "From the outside it doesn't look like a lot of change, but there is. It not only moves how you teach but when you might actually teach a certain subject."

To create time for teachers to review all the changes that will come with common core teaching, the superintendent asked the school principals to determine which day might be best to start classes late.

Mondays and Wednesdays were the two days that seemed to work the best for all locations, and after several minutes of discussion Merchant recommended to the board that all schools in the district start 30 minutes late on every Wednesday during the school year.

The school board promptly approved the schedule change.

To go along with the late start on Wednesdays, Merchant said that busses will run 30 minutes late on those days.

However, the release times at the end of the school day should remain the same.

And the total number of classroom instructional time that students receive will not be negatively affected, because the district is already scheduled for more than the required 1,080 hours of instruction, Merchant said.

For parents who have concerns about scheduling issues that may arise from the new flex day schedule, Merchant said they need to talk to their principals to see what options are available for them on Wednesday mornings.

Woodward High School Principal Kirk Warnick said that he knows flex days can be implemented successfully.

Warnick said the high school has previously implemented it's own flex day on Mondays to allow for a tutoring time to help students that might be lacking in a certain subject and want extra instruction.

"This program has worked very well for us," Warnick said, noting that the school has been using the flex schedule for the past couple of years.

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