FCPS releases 2017-2018 calendar

Binqi Chen and Casey Nguyen

Seniors, you can stop reading here, this won’t apply to you. Underclassmen though, August will be your new September. Get ready and prepare for the shortest summer you’ve ever had.

Fairfax County Public Schools just released its standard calendar for the 2017-2018 school year, which features a few big changes.

For the first time in FCPS history, schools will start before Labor Day on Aug 28.

But don’t freight, most of the schedule will remain the same. We still have our two week winter break and one week spring break.

There will still be two hour early releases when the grading quarter ends along with the traditional long four day weekends.

The new calendar has currently has 11 three to four day weekends for students and four early release days.

Starting school early has its perks though.

It will help with the SOL testing window. We follow the calendar for state testing set by the Commonwealth’s Department of Education.

This means that there are usually several weeks after the SOL and before finals week where teachers and students alike do not know what to do with that time.

Also, this will aid the rising seniorsĀ  with college applications as transcripts will be sent out earlier.

“Colleges are looking for semester grades in the January time frame,” Director of Student Services Jennifer Crump-Strawderman said, “With the current schedule, transcripts and semester grades don’t go out until mid-February, this is very late.”

But as with any major change, there will be huge impacts. In this case, not all of the changes are all positive.

For most students, their families traditionally spend August away from home.

Other students will be attending summer programs and sports camps. These will be equally affected.

“No one will be able to keep the same plans as they did before during the summer because of how short summer is becoming,” sophomore Tiyo Kebede said.

Give or take with possible snow days and other cancellations, students will end the school year on June 15th.

This is a couple of weeks earlier than normal, however, it will also cut the summer short.

Families will have a narrower time frame to be in each other’s presence, meaning quality family time is cut short.

As of now, the change in school start time is still up for debate. If taken into effect, there will be definite changes to the personal lives of the students.