OKLAHOMA CITY - The Oklahoma City Board of Education voted 7-1 Monday night to keep the current Continuous Learning Calendar in place for the 2018-2019 school year.
The debate was at times heated as Oklahoma City Board of Education members tried to hammer out the school year calendar.
"We have to maximize the number of hours our children have to learn, because we are in a crisis," said Board Member Charlie Henry.
"Regardless of what calendar we have, that we are retaining high quality teachers and that we are filling our vacancies," said OKCPS Superintendant Aurora Lora.
The current CLC calendar starts early in August and gives longer breaks during the year than a traditional schedule.
Education professionals presented data gathered from test scores that showed no clear difference in learning, no matter the calendar.
OKCPS conducted phone and online surveys that showed most parents didn’t have huge issues finding childcare during the breaks.
The surveys also showed teachers saw the breaks during the year as perks for employment.
Opponents wanted to change the calendar with a focus on optimize learning, not focusing solely on teacher retention. Concerns were also voiced that higher utility costs in early August make the CLC less cost effective than the traditional calendar.
Lora was adamant she plans to create separate boards this spring to work on calendars that will work better for all and to do them in three-year blocks so the board doesn’t have to vote on the calendar each year.