New School Calendar Means Longer Summer and Easier Travel

Changes to the 2018-2019 Major Dates Calendar Extend Summer and Shift Winter Break

This year’s calendar had students starting classes on Labor Day and returning from winter break on January 3.

Starting next school year, students and faculty at KUA will have almost an extra week of summer break before the start of school in September, along with a winter break that has been shifted forward one week. This will allow students to spend more time at home relaxing with friends and family before coming back to campus.

According to the Assistant Head of School, Mr. Weidman, “much of the school calendar depends on when Labor Day and Thanksgiving Day fall.” Due to this changing schedule, students often ended up with a shorter summer break. Coming back to school a little later not only benefits the people currently enrolled, but it also benefits enrollment.

KUA prides itself on its strong orientation for new students. This consists of coming to school days before returning students, allowing newer members of the community to participate in team building games and a camping trip that helps students bond. Freshman Casey McCauley said that this trip “made transitioning to a new School a lot easier.” The orientation is run by faculty and student leaders who volunteer their time to make coming to a new school as fun as it can be for the students. The later start to the school year will reduce the early arrival time for the student leaders.

Next year’s calendar has classes starting 4 days after Labor Day, while winter break is shifted to start  and end one week later.

The second major change made to the calendar is a one week shift in winter break. With the current schedule, boarders were required to be back on campus by 9 P.M. on January 2nd. This meant that if a boarding student was celebrating the New Year with their friends or family, they would need to find a way to make it back on campus within the next day. This was a struggle for students, and some were not able to make it back on time. Many international students suffered from severe jet lag, and the cost of travel, as well as the time spent jostling with post-holiday crowds, was higher.

The new changes seem to be a popular decision with many of the students on campus. As freshman Amelia Keith put it, “I live in Alaska, so it is harder to find time to see my family. Having more time to travel and relax is always a good thing.” With the longer summer break, students who live further away will be able to spend more time at home with their families before coming back to school in September.

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