Saturday, Oct 21, 2017
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Education

Bedford schools likely to make up days in June

Weather woes also hit Monroe, Ida, Mason

TEMPERANCE -- The one-two punch of ice and snow storms that shut down the district for a whole week has left no doubt that Bedford Schools must tack on extra days in June to complete the year.

The only question to be answered is just how many days will the district add to the calendar.

As of Friday, Bedford Public Schools had missed 12 days, putting the district over the state-allotted limit, according to Jonathan Whan, assistant superintendent of instruction and curriculum.

The state mandates that schools are in session for a minimum of 1,098 hours in a school year, equating to 165 school days. However, each school district sets the length of its school day.

Mr. Whan said he was waiting for direction from the Michigan Education Department on the number of days that students must attend to be in compliance with state law.

"We will make some days up. I have not heard back from the state on a final determination," he said.

Bedford Schools canceled four days last week after an ice storm knocked out power to much of the township.

Electricity was restored to the high school, junior high, and the district transportation garage on Thursday.

However, school was called off on Friday because of a snowstorm.

Monroe Public Schools will also make up at least one day.

"I expect that early next week we will have a plan in place for making up the time we lost," said school district spokesman Bobb Vergiels.

"We are fortunate in Monroe because our school year is scheduled to end with a half-day session on a Wednesday, giving us some time in the same week to schedule added days, as/if needed.

"Periodically, districts are in situations where they have to schedule into an additional week and that is not a desired option."

The school district was shut down six days in February, including three of the four days that it was scheduled to be open last week.

"February has been brutal. We were off on Tuesday but teachers were scheduled for an in-service day, which has to be made up. Teachers need that in-service training time," Mr. Vergiels said.

After Friday, Ida Public Schools had called off classes nine days and had several two-hour delays. The rural district was closed four of the five scheduled days last week.

"Currently we are three days and one hour behind," Superintendent Rick Carsten said.

With three months remaining in the school year and the history of delays in the spring because of heavy fog, Mr. Carsten said he anticipates the school year being extended.

"Until we know for sure, we are just looking at adding a few days on the end of the calendar year," he said.

Students who attend Mason Consolidated Schools have missed 11 days.

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