Board of Education Approves School Calendar for 2018 – 2019, 2019 Summer School Calendar

The Board of Education approved a school calendar for the 2018-2019 school year that maximizes the value of each instructional day.

Consistent with school code, the calendar provides for 181 days of instruction and four teacher institute days.  The school year will begin with three teacher institute days, which take place August 8-10, 2018.  These institute days will support typical new school-year orientation tasks while also providing dedicated time for District-wide departmental curriculum collaboration and alignment activities as well as targeted in-school initiatives. 

Students begin attending classes on August 13, 2018; first semester concludes on December 21, 2018; and the last day of school is May 24, 2019. 

The Board also approved summer school calendar for the summer of 2019.  The summer calendar provides for 26 days of instruction, with no classes on Fridays.  The first summer term begins on May 29, 2019 and concludes on June 19, 2019.  The second summer term begins on June 20, 2019 and concludes on July 15, 2019, with no classes being held on July 4.

A copy of the approved 2018-2019 school calendar is available here. Additional information on the approved school calendars is available here.

Important District 211 Calendar Dates for 2016-2017 Academic Year


August 15th is the First Day of SchoolIn order to maximize the value of each instructional day, District 211 adopted a collegiate-style calendar, which will take effect after a shortened summer with the 2016-2017 school year.

With the new calendar, first semester, including final exams, will end in December before students leave for winter break, and the school year will conclude, including final exams, prior to Memorial Day. The 2016-2017 school year begins with two teacher institute days on August 11 and 12. The first day of student attendance is Monday, August 15. The last day of school is May 26, 2017.

During the summer, IHSA football practice will begin on August 8, and IHSA fall sports practice begins on Wednesday, August 10. Some District-wide events include Parent Open House on September 1, 2016; First Generation College Night on September 14, 2016; College Night on October 19, 2016; and Realtors Against Homelessness (RAH) Event on November 3, 2016. Additionally, the District 211 Foundation Fun(d) Run will take place on Sunday, October 16, 2016.

As in previous years, the Board of Education has approved 12 Student Late Start Days in order to allow time for staff collaboration and sharing of best practices. Student Late Start Days will be in effect on the following dates: August 23, 2016; September 6, 2016; September 20, 2016; October 4, 2016; October 18, 2016; November 1, 2016; November 15, 2016; January 24, 2017; February 7, 2017; February 21, 2017; March 7, 2017; and March 21, 2017. More information on Student Late Start Days can be found on the District 211 website.

Final exams for fall semester will take place on December 21, 22, and 23, 2016, with the last day of school for first semester being Friday, December 23, 2016. Spring semester finals will take place May 24, 25, and 26, with the last day of school for the 2016-2017 school year being Friday, May 26, 2017, prior to the Memorial Day holiday weekend.

The following holidays will be observed during the 2016-2017 school year, with no school on these days:

  • Labor Day – September 5, 2016
  • Non-Attendance Day – November 23
  • Thanksgiving – November 24
  • Thanksgiving Holiday – November 25
  • Martin Luther King Jr. Day – January 16, 2017
  • Presidents’ Day – February 20, 2017
  • Non-Attendance Day – April 14, 2017

On Monday, October 10, 2016, Columbus Day holiday, students will not be in attendance as a Teacher Institute Day is scheduled for staff.

Winter vacation begins at the close of the school day (final exams) on Friday, December 23, 2016, and school resumes following vacation on Tuesday, January 10, 2017, with a Teacher Institute Day scheduled for Monday, January 9, 2017. Spring vacation begins at the close of the school day on Friday, March 24, 2017 and resumes following vacation on Monday, April 3, 2017.

May 30 through June 5 will serve as emergency days in the event District schools are closed for six or more student attendance days.

For more information, please visit the District website to view the 2016-2017 academic calendar.

The Full Picture of Planning an Academic Calendar

When planning a school year calendar, it’s easy to overlook various considerations that go into it. That’s why ensuring High School District 211’s academic calendar meets state requirements, satisfies the wishes of teachers and parents, and meets the needs of students, isn’t a simple task.

Many aren’t aware of the process to create a school calendar, and for the District’s 2013-2014 academic year, which was approved by the Board of Education on March 15, any slight changes happened for a reason.

“We’re looking for an overall good balance,” said Samantha Dolen, assistant superintendent for Student Services.

Each academic year has 185 days that need to be spread as evenly as possible between two semesters, with an additional six weeks of summer school. All of these guidelines revolve around strict requirements, such as state testing and the Illinois High School Association schedule for sports, while also considering District needs. This includes four institute days and five emergency days, such as school closures due to snow or inclement weather, that are already figured into the schedule.

Dolen said one possible change the District examined when planning the calendar was to finish first semester final exams prior to winter break, rather than after break as is customary. The District found there are more benefits to having finals culminate after break because of the amount of instructional days divided between first and second semesters.

“We looked at if it’s more beneficial for students to finish before winter break and lengthen their summer, or finish exams after break and have more of a balance by having almost equal days in each semester,” Dolen said.

If the District decided to have final exams completed before winter break, and perhaps emergency days were used, there is the potential to leave up to a 10-day difference between each semester. That might not seem significant, but for some students to get 10 more instructional days during a semester within a subject, especially in mathematics or sciences, seemed unbalanced. Dolen added that although the District isn’t opposed to exams finishing before break, the district would have to start early in August to make sure the semesters remained balanced.

For more information on the recently approved academic calendar, please click here.  To view next year’s academic calendar, click here. A copy of the 2013-2014 calendar approved by the Board of Education is available here.