How is the calendar developed each year?

Each year a committee made up of district staff and Madison Teachers Inc. (MTI) representatives meet over a series of months to finalize the next year’s school calendar.

What does the committee consider when developing the calendar?

The committee takes into account state laws, Department of Public Instruction (DPI) regulations, board of education policies, provisions of the employee handbook and religious holidays, staff and family input. These various provisions impact such things as school start date, the number of contracted work days and the number of conferences and Professional Development (PD) days.

In addition, we consider professional learning needs of our school staff, time for staff to analyze data and time  dedicated to implement each school’s School Improvement Plan (SIP).  We also consult with staff and family advisory groups about their preferences for length of breaks, the start and end of school year, scheduling conferences and so on.

There are six district wide Professional Development (PD) days throughout the school year. On these days, all school staff participate in professional learning together and students do not attend school. Why are these days important?

Professional learning promotes a thriving workforce and continuous improvement across the district. High-quality teacher teams are the cornerstone of great teaching in our schools. Research links teacher collaboration with higher levels of student achievement. Our teacher teams pursue common instructional purposes and goals, examine student learning and share their unique expertise. Dedicating days for teacher teams to do this work supports the regular cycle of planning, teaching, reflecting and adjusting needed for professional growth and student learning.

What is the district policy regarding religious holidays and how does that impact the district and school calendar?

Per Board of Education Policy (Policy 4039), schools shall avoid scheduling exams, athletic events/contests and other special events, such as assemblies, field trips and back-to-school nights, on days highlighted in yellow and identified as “Observances That May Impact Attendance.” Here is list of 2018-2023 Significant Religious Observances. Please note, while MMSD policy guides our planning of our district and school events, other districts may follow different policies when scheduling their athletic and/or competitive events.

Will the calendar be revised if school is cancelled because of inclement weather?

We have one snow day built into the calendar. If we have more than one snow day, we will likely have school during a scheduled Staff Only Day.

How does the change in middle school start times impact the calendar for middle schools?

As MMSD begins transitioning to change school start times and middle school transportation from Metro to yellow school buses, middle schools will have early release every Monday afternoon for the upcoming 2019-2020 school year. For middle schools that are transitioning to later start/Badger bus in 2020-21 and 2021-22, Metro dodger routes will be available for all Monday early release times to assist with our transportation and calendar transition needs. Review your school’s scheduled change in start time here.