School Make-Up and Snow Days Set
Most of April vacation will remain intact unless further snow days are called.
The extra days on which school will be in session — previously set as holidays on the school calendar — are the Martin Luther King holiday on Jan. 21; Thursday and Friday, Feb. 21 and 22, the last two days of the February weeklong vacation; Friday, April 26, the last day of the weeklong April vacation; and Friday, May 24, the first day of a scheduled long Memorial Day weekend.
The school board's consensus is "to preserve more of April break while still having days available if needed for additional snow days," said Board President Susan McGowan.
The only change from the proposal on the table two weeks ago, is scheduling the May 24 date instead of taking another day from April vacation.
The school board also made a list of previously scheduled days off on which school will be held if there are between one to five snow days called through the remainder of the 2012-13 school year.
The first scheduled snow day would be on Good Friday, March 29. The additional snow days, if they occur, would be taken from the April spring recess, starting with Thursday, April 25 and continuing backwards through Monday, April 22.
Snow days to follow would begin on June 28 and potentially on Saturdays. However, those days would only be put in effect if there are more than five snow days this school year.
McGowan confirmed that under any circumstances the set Ridge High School graduation date will remain on June 26.
However, since the Oak Street School had an additional day off because of a water main break in September, students at that school alone are now scheduled for an additional make-up day of June 27, she said.
Schools Superintendent Nick Markarian said the district would need the permission of the executive Somerset County superintendent to hold school on a Saturday, a proposal that he says he was informally told that state frowns upon.
"My belief is that we made a good plan that contains provisions for five snow days, if we used all of them up I believe that state would let us do a Saturday but I would not know for sure until I asked," Markarian said on Tuesday.
Although students actually were out of school for two full weeks on the day of the Oct. 29 storm and the road blockages and power outages following Sandy, three snow days were applied toward that time off. In addition, students were supposed to have had Nov. 8 to 9 off from school anyway for the scheduled New Jersey Education Association convention in Atlantic City. Although the convention was called off, the days off from school already had been built into the 2012-13 calendar.