Carroll County Times

As McCabe proposes 2024-25 Carroll schools calendar, Dorsey advocates for time off on Jewish holidays

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The Carroll County Board of Education discussed the 2024-2025 school calendar proposed by Superintendent Cynthia McCabe last week. If the proposed calendar is approved, the first day of school would be Sept. 3, the Tuesday after Labor Day.

Board member Patricia Dorsey asked the board to consider starting schools during the last week of August, as is done in neighboring Frederick and Howard counties, to give students more instruction time before standardized tests are administered.


Dorsey also advocated for school cancellation on Jewish holidays, to show respect for Jewish students and staff.

“It’s something certainly we can consider out of respect,” Dorsey said.


The current school year calendar was approved by a 4-1 vote last year, with Dorsey voting against after her suggestion of canceling school on Yom Kippur was not taken.

Yom Kippur is considered the holiest day in Judaism. In Carroll County Public Schools, no tests can be scheduled on Yom Kippur and missing school for the holiday is considered an excused absence.

Next year’s winter break is proposed to last for 10 school days, beginning Monday, Dec. 23, 2024, with students returning on Thursday, Jan. 2, 2025. This year’s winter break includes only six school days off.

The student representative on the board, Sahithya Sudhakar, said she is concerned that returning to school on a Thursday would cause student absences on Jan. 2 and 3.

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McCabe and board member Donna Sivigny both said the way the holidays fall on the calendar next year makes it difficult to schedule the winter break in an ideal way.

“It looks like it’s one of those years when (December) 25th falls right in the middle of the week,” Sivigny said, “and it kind of messes up how you want to do the days on either end of it.”

Spring break is planned as a long weekend, April 17-22, 2025, the same weekend as the Easter holiday. The last day of school for students is proposed as Friday, June 13, 2025.

Three emergency closing days are built into the proposed calendar, down from the five days built into the 2023-2024 calendar. The county used only one of four emergency closing days built into the 2022-2023 calendar.


The calendar is likely to be voted on by the school board on Nov. 8, according to the discussion item. Members of the public may comment on the proposed calendar up until that time. An online contact form is available at under the “Contact Us” tab.

School board meetings are open to the public and livestreamed on the Carroll County Public Schools YouTube channel and viewable on the right side of the Board of Education’s website at, under CETV Livestream. Meetings are also broadcast live throughout the month on Carroll Educational Television, Ch. 21.

Anyone who wishes to participate during the public participation portion of a meeting must fill out an online sign-up form at or call the communications office at 410-751-3020 by 9 p.m., on the Tuesday before a meeting.