Indiana Daily Student

MCCSC plans makeup snow days

During a winter that dumped a record amount of snow in Indianapolis, schools across the state have been closed multiple times this school year.

The Monroe County Community School Corporation missed five school days.

Two of those days were waived by the State Department of Accreditation, but the other three still must be made up.

Beverly Smith, director of school and community services for MCCSC, said the first day will be made up May 23.

The other two makeup days will also be added on to the end of the school year.
In Indiana, schools must be in session for 180 days, and any school days missed must be made up, unless waived by the state.

Due to the snow days, the statewide testing window for ISTEP has changed, but MCCSC’s testing window will stay the same.

Graduation dates for the corporation are also still on track, with students scheduled to graduate May 29-31.

On Feb. 13, Indiana Superintendent of Public Instruction Glenda Ritz announced that schools would have more options to make up these school days.

“As Hoosiers, we always expect harsh winter weather,” Ritz said in a press release.  “However, this year’s storms have been extreme and have interrupted instruction for schools throughout the state. I have spoken with countless superintendents throughout the state, and they have all asked for more flexibility for scheduling instructional time.”

Indiana schools will have the option to reschedule holidays, pre-established snow-flex days or professional development days without requesting a waiver from the IDOE.

Schools also have the option to request conditional waivers from the IDOE that will allow them to add instructional time to their school days in addition to time already provided in their calendars.

When the total additional time equals one school day, the school can apply for a conditional waiver of one day of instructional time from the IDOE.

Students in first through sixth grade must be in school for five hours per instructional day, and students in seventh through 12th grade must be in school for six hours each day.

Smith said teachers and staff diligently plan the time and information students will need to be successful academically each year, and snow days hinder this process.

“We want our students to have as much time as possible in school as planned to be empowered, learn and grow,” Smith said in an email interview.

Although this winter has been harsher than many in Indiana, Smith said she thinks MCCSC students, parents, faculty and staff handled the problems with grace as a community.

“We know this has been a unique winter season in Monroe County, and we thank our parents, students, staff and faculty for their support and patience as we continue to move forward in hopes of warmer weather,” she said.

Follow reporter Sydney Murray on Twitter @sydlm13.

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