Canyon ISD

A History of Excellence - A Tradition of Caring

2015-2016 CISD Calendar Information

Calendar Draft for 2015-2016
What are the Texas state laws governing school calendar development?

Texas Education Code (TEC) 25.081 states that school districts will provide 180 days of instruction for students. It also allows districts to apply for a waiver to have as few as 175 days of instruction to allow classroom teachers additional days of professional development to improve their curricular knowledge and instructional strategies. Under the provisions of TEC 25.081, CISD has been granted waivers from the Texas Education Agency to allow for 177 days of instruction and three additional days of professional development for our teaching staff.

Texas schools cannot begin classes before the fourth Monday in August, with no provisions for a waiver. For 2015 that date will be August 24.

What are the CISD school calendar development considerations?

The groups that work directly with school calendar development consider these priorities and factors to guide their planning:

  • Carefully set the number of instructional days in each semester and take into account the state testing days in the second semester

  • Provide 177 days for student instruction

  • Provide 10 days for teacher professional development/teacher preparation
  • Coordinate Spring Break with area school districts, universities and colleges, if possible
  • Construct a calendar that is educationally best for the majority of students

How does the state testing schedule impact the school calendar?

Testing schedules that are set at the state level impact where vacation days can be located. Since most state testing dates are scheduled for the spring months, the instructional time available during the spring semester is reduced unless additional days are added to the second semester. At this point, the TEA has released a tentative testing calendar for the 2015-16 school year, so there is a chance the calendar will need to be amended.

What are professional development days for teachers?

Professional Development describes the time educators use to enhance their knowledge and skills so they can improve the delivery and quality of an instructional program. It also includes teachers meeting together to plan lessons and units and to examine student work and assessment data.  Professional Development may be referred to as staff development, in-service, workshops, or training.
In Texas, some professional educators are required by state regulations to accrue 150 hours of Professional Development over a five-year period.  Teachers often attend professional development classes during the summer.  CISD offers many training classes for teachers during the summer.  However, teachers and administrators feel strongly that additional professional development days need to be spread throughout the year.  CISD also recognizes that professional development days during the school year create hardships for parents needing day care.  Therefore, the days selected for professional development for staff are selected carefully and kept to a minimum.
What are snow days?

The state requires that all school calendars include two holidays that can be used as student instructional days should inclement weather force school closings.  The days must be scheduled late enough in the year that the greatest threat of bad weather has passed.  In the Texas Panhandle, the most frequent reason for schools to be closed is due to snow and ice.  Therefore, the CISD school calendar will always include two holidays in April and/or May that are designated as bad weather make-up days.

How is Spring Break determined?

Canyon ISD recognizes that many families have connections with other area school districts and universities.  Therefore, the district strives to coordinate spring break with Amarillo ISD and other area public schools.  Consideration is also given to the spring break schedules of Amarillo College, West Texas A&M University, Texas Tech University and Texas A&M University.  Although the district cannot always coordinate spring break with every educational institution, we strive to make this a high priority. 

What is the 2015-2016 Calendar Development Process for CISD?

The school calendar development process encompasses several steps to insure input from teachers, parents, administrators and the CISD community. The steps are as follows:

  1. Several district groups are charged with the responsibility of giving formal school calendar development input. These are as follows:

    • CISD District Advisory Council (Membership includes: parents, community members, teachers and administrators)

    • CISD campus principals

    • CISD central office administrative team

  2. A draft option is presented to each group.  All suggestions and feedback are recorded and considered. 

  3. The draft calendar is currently being offered for public review through our district website.  The public may provide feedback to the district by telephone, email, or fax.  All public input will be recorded, considered, and shared with the central office administrative team and the CISD Board of Trustees.

  4. On December 15, 2014, the District Advisory Council recommendations and community comments will be presented to the CISD Board of Trustees. If approved by the Board, CISD will publish the school calendar on the district website no later than December 17, 2014.

Where can I get additional information or provide comments?

If you need additional information or would like to provide feedback or comments on the calendar options,  contact April McDaniel at 677-2621 or  Please click on the link below to view the proposed calendar options.
Last Modified on November 20, 2014