first_imgPALMDALE – Palmdale School District officials are looking to find out what parents think about making vacations and holidays align with those at Antelope Valley Union High School District schools. Over the past several years, Palmdale officials have gotten letters, phone calls, and e-mails from parents requesting that change, but officials say there is no way of telling how widespread that sentiment is. Palmdale’s school board last week ordered administrators to come up with suggestions on how to get parent feedback, such as sending home letters with pupils. “What we want to do is get more community input on this. We don’t know if they represent the entire district or if it’s a small group that is active and vocal in their opinions and thoughts. That has to be ascertained,” board President Sheldon Epstein said. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe Christmas Truce of 1914 proved that peace is possiblePalmdale three years ago switched from a three-track, year-round school calendar to a traditional one where school starts after Labor Day and ends in June. The high school district, however, has gone the opposite direction, moving the start date of classes from after Labor Day to mid-August and ending the year in late May. The changes have left some families with difficulty in planning holiday getaways and vacations. Interim superintendent Roger Gallizzi said Palmdale has tried to align winter and spring breaks as much as possible with those of the high school district. “We do get occasional comments and phone calls about not being aligned with the high school district,” interim Superintendent Roger Gallizzi said. “We have no way to gauge if this is how everybody feels. We feel there is a need to find out how the community is thinking.” A change would raise issues having to do with employee work schedules. Currently, some Palmdale staff work 10 months out of the year and would have to be changed to 11- or 12-month employees, Gallizzi said. In addition, hourly employees would not get paid during a three-week winter break. “Hourly employees only get paid when they work. If you have three weeks off at Christmas time, you are not going to get a paycheck,” Gallizzi said. High school district officials said they wanted to start school earlier so the first semester ends before the winter break. Resuming classes after the holidays often meant review and repeating lessons already covered. The change also provides more time for teachers to grade tests and for students to prepare for standardized testing in the spring, officials said. The schedule shift was done in consultation with teachers and after surveys were done, district officials said. The change, however, bumped up against the Antelope Valley Fair, during which hundreds of teens exhibit farm animals in the last week of August. Students were allowed to skip classes with the expectation they would make up the work when the fair ended. [email protected] (661) 267-5744160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more