It was a rough winter in many areas of the country, and school districts nationwide are scrambling to find ways to make up for snow-related closures.
An Arkansas school district scheduled classes on three Saturdays and Presidents Day to put in a dent in its nine-day deficit. A Kentucky school district is adding 33 minutes a day for about a week to make up for lost time. And school districts in Texas and New York are turning part of their spring break vacations into instructional days.
But in South Sound, most districts only lost four or five days, and that time will be made up with built-in snow days and an extended school year.
For example, Olympia School District will hold classes until June 24.
“That’s assuming there are no more cancellations,” said district spokesman Peter Rex.
Springtime closures could occur for a variety of reasons, including windstorms, flooding, earthquakes and power outages, he said.
South Sound’s largest school system, North Thurston Public Schools, is making up five days because of a power outage and several snow closures.
School officials reinstated two days during the school year, including one during midwinter break.
“Parents thanked us for doing that,” district spokeswoman Courtney Schrieve said. “If we hadn’t, their kids would be in school until June 28.”
And taking a lesson from this year’s scheduling challenges, North Thurston officials have decided to include four optional makeup days in the 2011-12 school calendar, Schrieve said.
Here are makeup days scheduled in various districts, as of this week:
Olympia: June 21-24.
Tumwater: June 17, 20, 21 and 22.
North Thurston: Jan. 28, Feb. 22, June 22-24.
Rainier: Feb. 22, May 27, June 15-16.
Rochester: Feb. 18, March 18, June 17 and 20.
Tenino: April 1 and May 27, June 16-17
Yelm: Feb. 22, May 27, June 16, 17 and 20.
Griffin: June 21-24 (these days need to be confirmed in April by the school board).
Lisa Pemberton: 360-754-5433, firstname.lastname@example.org