The mommies have spoken. Next year, RISD fall semester exams will be given before the holiday break. The Richardson ISD school board met Monday and approved the new calendar for 2010-2011.

Parents from all over the district have weighed in, frustrated that students were distracted by worrying about exams when they should be able to relax with family. Over the two year experiment, in which semesters were evenly divided and exams taken in January, parents complained that some students declined to go on mission trips, visits to Grandma’s, church group ski trips and outings with friends for fear of falling behind others who stayed home to study. Even enjoyment of sports, hobbies and reading for pleasure took a backseat to test prep – especially for serious high school students with class rankings on the line.

Deputy superintendent Patty Keiker invited RISD participants to vote on their preference. Of 575 respondents, including parents, teachers and principals, 550 urged the change.