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New High School Early Dismissal Schedule for Feb. 8, March 8 and April 26

A Message from the Department of Communications and Community Relations

Dear Families and Community,

As lawmakers in Olympia continue to work on fully funding K12 education, the state is making adjustments to teacher and staff compensation. Because of these changes, the district and Bellingham Education Association have been working together and have modified our professional development schedule for this year, which impacts our school year calendar.

We are making a change to this year’s school calendar that impacts high school specifically. We are adding high school early dismissals to Feb. 8, March 8 and April 26, which were originally scheduled as early dismissal days for elementary and middle schools only. See this modified calendar with the new “All Schools Early Dismissal” modifications.

Middle school will dismiss at 12 p.m. and both elementary and high schools will dismiss at 12:45 p.m. (which is a half hour later than the previous high school early dismissal on Nov. 22).

Please note for high school bus riders on early dismissal days: Buses will not arrive until 1:45 p.m. Student bus riders and families may make other transportation arrangements from school, including accessing Whatcom Transit Authority (WTA) buses. To get a free WTA bus token, talk to staff in your school’s main office and please review these safety tips from WTA. Or, students can stay on campus for supervised activities until school buses arrive at 1:45 p.m. We will be sending a separate communication regarding buses for high school students who receive special education services.

Other important calendar notes:

  • The early dismissal schedule for elementary and middle schools on June 7 will remain as is (and will not include high schools).
  • 9, March 9 and April 27 are still “no school days for students,” however, these days may be used as make-up days if school is canceled due to snow or weather. June 15 is still a make-up day in case of closures.
  • The last day of school, currently scheduled for June 14, is still an early dismissal day for all schools. Middle school will be dismissed at 12 p.m., and elementary and high school students will be dismissed at 12:45 p.m.
  • We, the district and BEA, are continuing to work together to finalize the 2018-19 school year calendar. In December, we shared key dates for 2018-19, and we anticipate sharing next year’s full calendar in the near future.

Please see this webpage for this year’s calendar and information related to tentative graduation dates for the class of 2018.