Fairfax County Schools Recognize 4 More Religious Holidays

FCPS voted to add Diwali, Eid al-Fitr, Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur to the school calendar

henna on child hand eid
Katherine Frey/The The Washington Post via Getty Images

Four more religious holidays are now recognized by Fairfax County Public Schools. 

The school board voted Thursday to add Diwali, Eid al-Fitr, Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur to the district’s calendar. Students will not automatically get these days off, but “tests, quizzes, field trips, graduation, homecoming [and] FCPS-scheduled athletic events” will not be scheduled on them. 

"Students will not have to make choices between honoring their religious or cultural observance, or taking a test this coming school year," district officials said in a statement.

The addition of these holidays to the school calendar is intended to recognize the religious and cultural observances of families in the county. 

“The approach taken in the development of this calendar is one of equity and inclusivity. It aims to center equity by elevating our systems' respect for religious and cultural observances. While this final calendar for 2021-22 may not align with the goals of everyone in Fairfax County, it recognizes all religious and cultural observances where Fairfax County Public Schools (FCPS) has seen above-average absences over the last five years,” School Board Chair Ricardy Anderson said in a statement. 

The school board also set the first day of next school year as Aug. 23 and the last day as June 10. Students will get Nov. 24-26 off for Thanksgiving break, Dec. 20-31 off for winter break and April 4-8 off for spring break.

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