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Onalaska ISD


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2023/2024 School Year 4-Day Instructional Week



On January 23rd, the Onalaska ISD Board of Trustees approved changing to a 4-Day School Week for the 2023-2024 school year. The official calendar will be finalized and approved in February and will be made public at that time.

Onalaska ISD appreciates the great response to our parent survey and the input provided by all of our stakeholders. If you have any additional questions, please email amaichetti@onalaskaisd.net or call 936-646-1099.


Information shared at the Town Hall Meeting and the survey results can be viewed by clicking on the link below. You can also find previously shared information regarding FAQ's. 

4 Day Instructional Week Presentation




Dear Wildcat Family,


Texas, and the Nation, are experiencing a major teacher shortage, particularly in rural areas. The teacher shortage is expected to be a long-term issue. In addition, small and rural school districts are having a difficult time competing with pay and benefit packages offered by larger urban districts. Onalaska ISD is not immune to this shortage or competitive disadvantage. To help address this issue and achieve our goal of retaining and recruiting the highest quality teachers and staff for our students, Onalaska ISD is exploring the possibility of adopting a 4-day instructional week starting with the 2023-2024 school year.


I would like to take this opportunity to discuss the possible benefits of a 4-day instructional week. First, a 4-day instructional week would serve as a major attraction for retaining and recruiting high quality teachers and staff. Second, it would provide additional time for staff development and planning to enhance instruction that will lead to improved student achievement. Third, it would have a positive impact on staff and student attendance, which is directly tied to student success. Finally, all of these benefits would help foster, support, and maintain our positive school climate.


To begin the process of exploring a 4-day instructional week, we would like to survey our school community stakeholders. We are asking all OISD parents, staff members, and high school students to complete an online survey to give their input on the possibility of a 4-day instructional week at OISD. Below you will find a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) section to help provide some answers to questions you may have about a 4-day instructional week. Included in the survey will be an area that you can add additional questions. We will add the additional questions and answers to the FAQ as we receive them. After the FAQ section is a link to the staff survey. Staff with students in the District will receive an additional parent survey through Remind. Please make sure you fill out both.


Depending on the results of the survey, OISD will determine if this change is one that has the support of the school community. I want to thank you in advance for taking the time to complete this survey and for providing valuable input as we explore the possibility of a 4-day instructional week.




Anthony Roberts

Superintendent of Schools

Onalaska ISD


4-Day Instructional Week FAQ


  1. What days would we be out?

  • Students would go to school Monday to Thursday, and be off Friday. During weeks that have a holiday or professional development day on Monday (Labor Day, MLK Day), students would go to school Tuesday through Friday.

  • Teachers and Paraprofessionals would work two (2) Fridays per month. This time would be structured time devoted to lesson planning, professional development activities and training, parent conferences and communication, analyzing student performance data, grading assignment and updating grades, district, campus, and departmental meetings, etc.

  • Teachers and paraprofessionals would be off at least two (2) Fridays per month. 


  1. Would this lower the pay of teachers?

  • No. This would not change the pay of teachers.


  1. Would this lower the pay of support staff (paraprofessionals, bus drivers, maintenance, custodians, cafeteria, secretaries, aides, etc.)?

  • No. This would not lower the pay of support staff.


  1. Would our days be longer?

  • Yes, we currently have a 465 minute per day instructional calendar. We would add 30 minutes to the school day.


  1. What would be the start and end times for school?

  • School would start at 7:45 a.m. and end at 4:00 p.m. Breakfast would still be available from 7:15 a.m. to 7:45 a.m.


  1. How many days would students go to school?

  • Students would go to school for 155 days. They would receive 76,725 minutes of instruction. This exceeds the state required 75,600 minutes of instruction.

  • The excess minutes can be used to replace up to two bad weather days.


  1. How many days would teachers and paraprofessionals work?

  • Teachers and paraprofessionals that are not on extended contracts would work 179 days per year.


  1. Would we start school earlier in the year?

  • Yes. The calendar we are working on would have teachers return on July 31st instead of August 7th. 

  • Students would start on August 8th instead of August 16th.


  1. Would this cause us to go to school later in the year?

  • Students’ last day would be May 30th and the last day for staff would be May 31st. 


  1. Would a 4-Day instructional week shorten our holiday breaks during the year?

  • No. Thanksgiving Break, Christmas Break, and Spring Break would be the same length.

  • We would take off Labor Day, Martin Luther King Day, Good Friday, and Memorial Day.


  1. How would this affect Extracurricular Activities on Fridays?

  • Athletic events and other competitions that are on Fridays would continue as they have in the past.

  • A benefit to this is that junior high students that travel to competitions on Thursday nights, and often get home very late, would not have school on Friday morning.

  • This would also help high school students and teachers/coaches that must leave school early to travel to competitions on Friday.


  1. What about child care for parents of young children that work 5 day work weeks?

  • OISD will not be able to provide childcare on Fridays.

  • We would be willing to explore creative ways to partner with child care providers/community organizations to help offer child care. 


  1. What about low income students that rely on the school district for two meals a day?

  • We understand that not having school on Friday creates challenges for families. Currently, Onalaska Elementary and Onalaska Junior Senior High work to provide a number of low-income students a weekend meal bag. We would continue these efforts to provide for those in need.

  • We are working on developing a “Grab and Go” option on Thursday for our students who are in need of Friday meals.


  1. Is this change being considered to save money?

  • This change is not being considered as a way to save money. This change would be considered revenue neutral.


  1. What are the reasons for considering this change?

  • One reason to move to a 4-Day instructional week is to help retain and recruit highly qualified teachers and staff. Combined with our current salary and benefits, we believe this would give us a competitive advantage in hiring. We have found that other schools that have instituted this change have been able to increase their ability to retain and hire highly qualified teachers and staff.

  • Another reason is to provide additional time for teachers to plan high quality and effective instruction, attend professional development activities and trainings, increase opportunities for parental conferences/communication, and complete other requirements that fall outside of classroom instruction time. This time would lead to an even greater quality of instruction which would improve student achievement and success.

  • This change would also help with staff and student attendance by allowing time for staff and families to schedule appointments and other events on Fridays.

  • We also believe that this change would help boost the climate among staff and students. 


If you have any additional questions, please feel free to call 936-646-1099. We would be more than happy to answer questions and provide additional information.