Bettendorf Community School District

Bettendorf is considering a new academic calendar: One version calls for a four-day weekend in October 2018, the other version is for a full week off at Thanksgiving.

A full week off at Thanksgiving, or a four-day weekend in October — those are two calendar alternatives being considered by the Bettendorf Community School District.

Calendars are under study, with public hearings anticipated for January in both Bettendorf and Pleasant Valley districts.

Both school districts plan to start school on Aug. 23, 2018, the first day allowed by the state.

No changes from the current year are anticipated in Pleasant Valley, Superintendent Jim Spelhaug said.

In Bettendorf, Bettendorf Superintendent Michael Raso said the school board received three versions of the new calendar several weeks ago.

On Monday, the district decided to work on a calendar based on hours in school, not days, which is commonly done in Iowa. "That's because it gives us more flexibility," Raso said.

The board is studying two of the three options: A four-day weekend in October, as was done in 2017, or a full week off at Thanksgiving, Raso said.

Bettendorf is working with the calendar committee, and "we are still surveying folks," Raso said, including staff and faculty members.

Last year, the calendar was problematic in Bettendorf as district officials seek to put all district schools on the same academic calendar.

Since 1997, students at Neil Armstrong Elementary School in Bettendorf have had a fall vacation break. It currently operates as a year-round school but plans are to change that to the traditional schedule next year.