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Monday, February 15, 2010

Snowpocalypse Waiver Possible

Many of you have asked the question: what will happen as a result of our snow days? As of right now, MCPS has missed 9 school days due to this historic weather. Maryland State Law requires that school systems have 180 school days built into the year. That would mean that we would extend our school year by 5 days into the summer. We probably have two more days in the summer we can add on to until we start going into spring break.

However, Montgomery County Public Schools is currently seeking a waiver for this 180-day rule. The ruling would be determined by the State Superintendent and the State Board of Education at the Maryland State Department of Education. To give you all some historical background, back in 2005, MSDE excused several days of this 180 rule because of Hurricane Katrina. It looks like the State is pursuing a similar measure as a result of this year's weather.

But here's the twist, the state also has an HOURS requirement. Middle schools must have 1080 hours and high schools must have 1170 hours in a school year. This is why it is detrimental to have consistent 2-hour delays or early releases even though we have a school day. Unfortunately, this hours requirement cannot be waived. So MCPS administration is looking to see some ways where we can expand the number of school hours.

I will keep you guys up to date as we deal with the situation.

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