HOT SPRINGS, Ark. – As districts across Arkansas look at ways to combat learning loss students experienced during the pandemic, one central Arkansas school district is exploring a new schedule.

The Hot Springs School District is looking at an alternate calendar called the “year round calendar.” District leaders are still working on the schedule but the way it’s drafted now, students would get out for the summer at the end of May and come back to school towards the end of July. They would take about a two week break every quarter and no break can be longer than seven weeks.

Students would still go to school for 178 days just like a traditional school year and the district will still provide food during the breaks.

The district hosting a meeting Thursday night to present the option to parents.

“We as a district would never make a decision without taking into account what everyone feels about that and so the community and the parent engagement is critical,” HSSD Superintendent Dr. Stephanie Nehus said.

Dr. Nehus said it’s important to gauge parents’ interest and address questions and concerns.

“A are you open to doing this a little differently and shifting some times and B what are the challenges,” Dr. Nehus said. “Would childcare be a challenge two weeks in September, October. Would that present an issue. Could it be a challenge for our high school kids who work normally during the summer.”

The meeting starts at 5 p.m. at the district office. Parents can also join a zoom link. Dr. Nehus says if parents can’t make it, please send an email with any questions or concerns they may have.