Students in the Keller school district have this entire week off this year, joining most other area districts in scheduling a five-day break for the Thanksgiving holiday.
The decision to shut down all Keller campuses and the administration building was a cost-cutting move.
In previous years, Keller teachers and administrators were required to report for training and other duties for part of the week before the four-day weekend. But by closing the doors, officials expect to save about $46,000 in utility costs.
"That's almost the cost of one teacher, and why not do that?" said Keller school board President Kevin Stevenson. "I think everybody's happy for a break. It's a time for people to unwind, recharge and spend time with family."
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In the Fort Worth district, teachers and students have the week off, but central administration employees must work today and Tuesday.
In Arlington schools, students are in class today and Tuesday but have the rest of the week off. Teachers have a work day Wednesday before the district shuts down Thursday and Friday.
Instead of taking the whole week off for Thanksgiving, the district calendar includes at least one student holiday every month, said Amy Casas, a school district spokeswoman.
"Every year the subject comes up in terms of having the whole week off, but teachers and students like the idea of having a day off at least every month," Casas said. "If we don't have those days off in November, that allows us to have the breaks throughout the year."
In the Birdville school district, classes will be held today and Tuesday but the district is closed the rest of the week. Next year, students could have the whole week off, in exchange for a shorter winter break in December. Trustees are expected to vote on a calendar next month.
Administrators say that some students don't show up for school during Thanksgiving week anyway, costing Birdville in state funding.
"That's the impact that we've seen with decreased attendance in the Monday and Tuesday before Thanksgiving," said Birdville spokesman Mark Thomas. "We're just trying to, based on the tight restrictions from the state, come up with the best scenario for us to work with."
Jessamy Brown, 817-390-7326