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Public board chair can't see year-round schooling pilot program starting by 2019

Scott McMillan says it's 'premature' to say year-round schooling will happen here. The issue has only been talked about at the committee level
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The chair of the Waterloo Region District School Board says at this point it's "premature" to say year-round schooling is going to happen here.

"It's something that we're having conversations about. We're trying explore ... gather evidence so that we can make evidence based decisions on this." said Scott McMillan.

He says they're step one of what would likely be five or six steps.

Year-round schooling is only being discussed at the committee level.

"That committee has met a couple of times. That committee will bring, might bring recommendations back to the board. That recommendation might be, yes, let's ... further explore the opportunity of pilot projects. That committee might come back with the recommendation that ... we couldn't reach any conclusions and we actually don't bring any recommendations back," McMillan told The Mike Farwell Show on 570 NEWS.

Trustee Kathi Smith also discussed the issue of year-round schooling on the show just a few weeks ago.

"And I, like Trustee Smith, hope that we do explore year-round schooling. I think there's lots of evidence that shows it's worthwhile supporting, but it would be wrong for me to say that we are going to, cause we are just way, way too far up the track to say that we're going to cross the finish line on that." added McMillan.

Smith was hoping they could potentially pilot year-round schooling in two or three schools by 2019, but McMillan doesn't see that as being possible.

"I don't know, don't say never, but I think that's a lot of moving pieces to get together by the fall of 2019. I think you're probably looking at sometime later than that." he explained.

Some schools in Peel and Durham already offer year-round schooling.

It would mean only one month off in the summer, but a longer break over Christmas.

Smith said year-round schooling would give children an opportunity to retain their learning a little bit longer.


Blair Adams

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