Education

From snow days to Saturday school, students head back to class

Posted February 15

— Hundreds of year-round students were back in school Saturday, making up for lost time due to snow days several weeks ago. Now, school officials have to figure out how to make up days from this past week’s snowstorm.

As of Saturday, Wake County public schools students have to make up a total of seven days – four from the previous snowstorm and three from this week.

“We may be running out of Saturdays. We’ll have to look at Plan B, Plan C – whatever we need to do to make up that time,” said Oak Grove Elementary School Principal Beth Jarman.

Snow days are not built into the year-round calendar. That’s because school is always in session. When one group of year-round students are out of school, another group or track uses the classrooms.

Gov. Pat McCrory will meet with the State Board of Education next week to see if they can get around a state law that requires students receive either 180 days or 1,025 hours of instruction each year.

“I’m talking to my own chief legal counsel to see what authority I, as governor, have to allow more flexibilities in those counties that have been impacted by so many days off,” McCrory said.

The Wake County school board will meet next week to work out more dates if needed. Durham County schools haven't yet decided when their makeup days will be.

For now, it's school on Saturday for many Wake County students. But not everyone is complaining.

“I actually like to go to school, so I was excited,” said Oak Grove second-grader Sam Majmundar. “I wasn’t excited that it was only like a quarter of a real day, so it just struck me that I wanted to have a whole day.”

4 Comments

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  • whatelseisnew Feb 17, 4:06 p.m.

    They should cut back the expansive holidays. Start this year with the so-called spring break. Next year, cut the christmas timeoff down to 1 day, zero days if Christmas falls on a Saturday or Sunday. Lets get the system on a normal private sector schedule.

  • Honesty first Feb 17, 12:17 p.m.

    The Law passes by the NC General Assembly requires 185 days, not 180. They did this when they sent the earliest starting day as well as the day classes had to end. Call them back into session Pat and allow for reductions. They get a waiver every year for the mountain counties.

  • NCCoachSE Feb 17, 12:16 p.m.

    Most if not all counties use teacher work days for such off school days, possible they need adjust so more of them occur later in the year. This has been a very unusual year and I'm sure due to budgets they schedule on what is absolutely necessary. Still agree that more planning for days off should be done, even down to shortening the school year at the end if calamity days are not used that have been built in.

  • Killian Feb 17, 11:58 a.m.

    This gets old. Every year this happens, and every year, superintendents are left wringing their hands.

    Extending the school day for 10 minutes on either side of the day (for a total of 20) would make up one hour every three days. Averaging a 7 hour school day, one full day could be made up in a month or so.

    But here's the thing - this doesn't need to be a reactive decision. It could be implemented from Day one, and 8 snow days would be covered before they happened.

    I fail to comprehend why this is not addressed as a proactive system as in northern schools. It would protect against not just snow days, but hurricanes, etc, as well.

    Just one more example of how the Powers That Be do not have the sense to be running our schools.