Should SCASD Align Its Spring Break with PSU?
With last week’s Penn State spring break, students were able to put down their textbooks and take a break. However, it seems that relaxation was contagious.
For many years, the State College Area School District had its spring break aligned with Penn State’s, but this year things were different. The two breaks only partially aligned.
The Centre Daily Times reported that from Wednesday to Friday last week between 17 and 19 percent of students at State College High School were absent, more than 3 times the average rate. With approximately 12 percent of students filling out educational trip forms to explain their absence, the halls of State College High were 450 people emptier than usual.
The school district was expecting this, though perhaps not to the degree it actually happened. With so many faculty children and siblings of Penn State students in the State College Area School District, families had been complaining for months that they would be unable to use spring break to vacation together.
On Monday, the school board voted to approve a calendar for next year that differed little from the current one. The major reason for the hesitance to align, according to the superintendent, is that the Pennsylvania System of School Assessment tests occur in the weeks right following spring break, and a major pause in studies right before would hurt the district’s results.
Jim Leous, a dissenting member of the board who works on emerging educational technologies for Penn State, tweeted this following Monday’s disappointing outcome:
What do you think? Should local schools align their breaks to match Penn State?