Whether you like his ideas or not, you have to admire the way Clay County School Board Chairman Charlie Van Zant Jr. thinks outside the box in trying to come up with methods to cut expenses for the cash-strapped system.
Earlier this year, Van Zant
broached the subject of a four-day school schedule.
I think he
wouldn't get much support for the unpopular idea but he
put it out there anyway.
Now, Van Zant wants to hear from the public about another idea he
has: a longer school day that would result in fewer teaching days in the school calendar year.
says there are two bills in the Legislature that would make it possible to change the actual numbers of days taught, thus possibly saving money.
Scenarios running from adding 20 to 40 to 60 extra minutes a day could shorten the mandated 180-school year by X number of days if the Legislature passes versions of the two bills.
said a rough estimate he
made on a school day extended by 60 minutes would save approximately $14 million, possibly allowing the district to salvage some of the 450 jobs they are expecting to have to cut this year.
The actual savings may be somewhat less than Van Zant
came up with, however.