School year may get 4 more days

April 13, 1993|By Anne Haddad | Anne Haddad,Staff Writer

All the joy that students had on those snowy mornings when school was closed will not come cheap: The Board of Education is expected to take a final vote tomorrow on whether to extend the school year by four days to make up for time missed because of weather.

The board's monthly meeting is to begin at 9 a.m. in the South Carroll High School auditorium.

That venue is much larger than the board room where the members usually meet. Superintendent R. Edward Shilling said last month he booked the larger space because a number of awards will be given to students.

Several parents are expected to pack the seats for two other issues -- the making up of school days and the building of a middle school on Oklahoma Road to ease crowding at Sykesville Middle School.

Unless the local board votes to ask the Maryland State Board of Education for a waiver from the 180-day rule, school will extend four days longer than planned. That means June 24 will be the last day for everyone but seniors, who graduate June 18-20.

The last day of the school year originally was to be June 18, on the assumption that school would close three days during the year for snow days.

But the county's schools were closed seven days, which means the system has to make up four to amass the state-required 180 days of instruction.

The local board could decide to ask for a waiver, as have other counties.

The State Board of Education last month granted one-day waivers to six counties, but did so reluctantly.

Deputy Superintendent Brian Lockard said he doesn't believe Carroll meets the criteria set in state law for that waiver.

For example, one circumstance that swayed the state board to grant waivers for Garrett and Washington counties was that the added days would have meant ending school on a Monday.

Carroll would have finished on a Friday. With the four added days, it would end on the next Thursday.

The state board requires Maryland's school systems to build three to 10 snow days into their calendars. In contrast to Carroll County, Garrett schools built in 10 snow days, but used 13.

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