Longer days to make up for snow days

ELNORA, Ind. (WTHI) – Beginning Monday North Daviess students will have to go to school for an extra hour for the next 24 days.

This so the school district can make up four snow days not already built into the school calendar.

“We had actually surveyed the staff and talked to the seniors about what’s the best option,” said Robert Bell, North Daviess superintendent. “And we also surveyed the community.”

What the school district found was two out of three parents surveyed preferred extending current school days over adding the four snow days to the end of the calendar.

With that information in hand, North Daviess school leaders moved quickly to get their plan before the board for approval.

After all, ISTEP testing begins next month.

“We lost more than 3500 minutes of instruction at the elementary, and we felt it was important to get some of that instructional time back before we start the high-stake testing when ISTEP starts,” Bell said.

Elementary and junior high students will spend their extra hour preparing specifically for the ISTEP – including individualized remediation for students who need it.

High school students will rotate their classes in the extra period. On Mondays they’ll take first hour twice, Tuesdays it is second hour twice and so on.

For families, and especially the seniors who graduate this year, it was important for school to end on May 23 as planned.

“We were just going to come back the four days after Memorial Day and have the seniors take tests on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday,” Bell said. “They didn’t like that.  We also looked at moving graduation.  Well, no one wants to move graduation, because people have plans.  People are coming in from out of state.”

And it pays to get these longer days in now.

The longer days at North Daviess will end April 3, meaning they won’t conflict too much with spring sports and activities.

The new dismissal time for those 24 extended days will be 4:05 p.m.

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