School Board sets next year’s calendar

The Fluvanna County School Board unanimously approved the 2017-2018 school calendar and a new bus policy at its March meeting Wednesday (March 8).

Calendar highlights include:

·         Students’ first day on Aug. 9;

·         Two-week Christmas break Dec. 20 through Jan. 4;

·         Last day of school May 23, 2018; and

·         Graduation May 26, 2018 – the Saturday of Memorial Day weekend.

After the Board approved the calendar, Interim Superintendent Chuck Winkler said he hopes to consider a two-year calendar next time.

“We’re approving this just months before it’s going to start,” Winkler said. “I hope we can plan two years at a time.”

Doing that would give families, teachers and the community a chance to plan ahead, Winkler said.

The school bus policy was questioned by Board member Charles Rittenhouse after the husband of Board member Camilla Washington rented a school bus in December to ferry supporters to a Democratic caucus in Farmville. At that caucus, Democrats chose Ryant Washington, a former Fluvanna sheriff, to run for the 22nd District State Senate seat. Ryant Washington lost to Republican Mark Peake.

Rittenhouse questioned if it was appropriate to use school buses for political purposes. That prompted the change in policy wording.

Before the vote, Rittenhouse said he was fine with the new language as long as it prohibited the political use of school buses.

Below is the reworded policy:


The use of school buses for purposes other than transporting children to and from school for the regular school hours and for extracurricular activities is permitted with prior approval of the superintendent and in accordance with regulations pertaining to field trips.

In addition, the The School Board may enter into agreements with its appropriating body, or any state agency or any federal agency established or identified pursuant 42 U.S.C. § 3001 et seq. providing for the use of the school buses of the division by such body or agency for public purposes, including transportation for the elderly. Each such agreement shall provide for reimbursing the school board in full for the proportionate share of any and all costs, both fixed and variable, of such buses incurred by such school board attributable to the use of such buses pursuant to such agreement. The appropriating body, or state or federal agency, shall indemnify and hold harmless the school board from any and all liability of the school board by virtue of use of such buses pursuant to an agreement.

The School Board authorizes the Superintendent or designee to approve such requests. The Superintendent shall include any approvals in a report to the School Board at the next regularly scheduled School Board meeting.