Anne Arundel County public schools will be open on Inauguration Day. The county had considered closing its 119 schools for President-elect Barack Obama's swearing-in ceremony Jan. 20.
School officials announced the decision Tuesday, after they considered canceling school because of the historic nature of the inauguration of the country's first blackpresident. Large absences are expected at schools across the country.
"All presidential inaugurations are historic events," Superintendent Kevin M. Maxwell said in a statement. "While this year's inauguration has even greater historical implications, we feel this is the ideal time to make this notable moment a teachable one."
The school system's social studies office has developed materials and recommended activities for teachers that are "centered on the inauguration."
Students who miss school to attend the inauguration will receive an excused absence if they produce a signed note from a parent or guardian, school officials said. Additionally, students who miss the semester exam at the Center for Applied Technology or the HSA Algebra make-up exam and have an excused absence must make arrangements through their administrator to complete the exams.