As the winter of 2013-14 continues to drag along and keep the area in its snowy and frigid grasp, the Lonedell R-XIV School District has reached the maximum number of snow days it needs to keep track of in relation to the state and its makeup policy.
And, St. Clair R-XIII is not too far behind.
The inclement weather that invaded Franklin County on Sunday, even though it was far less severe than forecasted, caused local school districts to cancel school on Monday. The main reason cited was slick and hazardous road conditions.
St. Clair also kept its doors closed on Tuesday because of hazardous driving conditions on secondary roads, Superintendent Mike Murphy said. Lonedell was in session as were all other area schools.
When Lonedell Superintendent Jen Ulrich sent her phone blast to district patrons Sunday evening announcing Monday’s closure, it marked the 14th snow day there this winter. It also meant the 10th and final makeup day was scheduled for Thursday, May 29.
“I’ve talked about winter weather so much that I’m talked out,” Ulrich told The Missourian on Monday morning. “Nothing left to say besides please bring on spring!”
St. Clair stands at 12 snow days, and Monday’s cancellation of classes pushes its academic calendar to Wednesday, May 28. Tuesday is considered to be a “freebie” under the state’s makeup policy.
The final day of school in both districts originally was supposed to be Tuesday, May 20.
Missouri does have a forgiveness formula that kicks in after seven makeup days. It reads that the eighth, 10th, 12th and 14th snow days do not have to be made up, and every day after a 14th snow day is forgiven as well.
That means that school districts are required to make up the first seven days as well as the ninth, 11th and 13th to come up with the 10 rescheduled days.
However, Lonedell’s situation is a little different because Ulrich was forced to cancel school on a scheduled makeup day, Feb. 17. That Monday was supposed to be the district’s fourth snow makeup day of the season. Since it wasn’t, seven days still are needed.
Those days now are scheduled to be March 14 and May 21-23 and 27-29. Monday, May 26, is Memorial Day.
“The thing we have to remember is that the state mandates we have to make up 10 days,” Ulrich told The Missourian.
In St. Clair R-XIII, nine days have to be made up. Three already have been, leaving six. Those six days are March 17, May 21-23, May 27 and now May 28.
If St. Clair misses another day, its academic year will be extended to the maximum under the state formula.
Despite the later final day, the R-XIII board of education already has decided to leave St. Clair High School’s graduation date alone. It will take place on Thursday, May 15.
Lonedell has not yet set its eighth-grade graduation date. Ulrich said the district traditionally conducts commencement on the Saturday before the last day of classes, but that would mean having it over Memorial Day weekend this year.
“Although the date is not yet set, it is more than likely going to be during the week this year due to all the snow,” she said.