June saw Blaine County School District trustees make two unanimous decisions—one perfunctory, one not—that will impact students significantly next year, especially high schoolers. And both had little or nothing to do with the pandemic.
The perfunctory? Approval of what is essentially a preliminary and balanced budget for the 2021-22 school year totaling more than $64.5 million. The unexpected? Approval of using the trimester system at Wood River High School for the 2021-22 school year.
Plans for the upcoming school year were to use a quarter system with the goal of allowing certain classes—like band—to continue now and then wrap up at the school calendar’s halfway mark (the semester). The district said management software shortcomings prevented that. Trustees took in staff, teacher, parent and student feedback to determine that a trimester format—breaking the school calendar up into three chunks—was the best alternative.
As for the budget, the public can submit comments on the approved budget before the trustees’ July 20 session, wherein the board can make tweaks based on that feedback and other factors.