School closings will cut into summer fun

January 20, 1994|By Lan Nguyen | Lan Nguyen,Staff Writer

Until today, Howard County students did not have to worry about upsetting summer vacations or missing any time around the swimming pool.

But today marks the fourth day students have been out of school because of inclement weather -- one day more than school officials had scheduled.

And although some students are happy about being off unexpectedly for an entire week, they'll have their comeuppance in June, when they will go to school longer to meet the state's requirement that schools be open for 180 days.

"Once we start looking at days at the end of the year to make up, parents will look at winter closures seriously," Superintendent Michael E. Hickey said yesterday.

Students will be off again tomorrow because of an already scheduled professional work day for teachers. They were off Monday because of the Martin Luther King holiday.

When -- and if -- students return to school next Monday , they'll be attending classes for a full day, not a half day as had been previously planned.

"We figured that everybody has been out essentially most of this week," Dr. Hickey said. "We want to give teachers a full day with their kids."

High school final exams scheduled to start Monday will also be delayed until Wednesday to give teachers time to review and students time to prepare.

"What final exams will be given and when, we're finalizing it," Associate Superintendent James McGowan said. "The last five years, we've had mild winters. We haven't been confronted with" changing the exam schedule.

State functional citizenship tests scheduled to be taken by 10th-graders before Feb. 4 -- the state's deadline -- will be given on Feb. 2, about a week after students complete their final exams.

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