Mark Henson Speaks on Making Up Snow Days

Community, Featured Stories, Rebel's Corner

Dear Parents,

What a winter this has been! We have experienced extremely cold and wet weather
conditions along with water issues that have resulted in a serious loss of instructional
time for our students. With the goal in mind of increasing student achievement each
year, we have formulated a plan to recapture some of this missed instructional time
while still taking advantage of some of the days that have been forgiven by the state. At this point in time our children have missed eleven (11) instructional days. We
made up two of those days on Monday, February 17, 2014 and Tuesday, February 18,
2014. In addition to this change, we will be altering our school calendar to make up
three (3) of the nine (9) remaining days that students have missed. In order to make
these three (3) days, up the following emergency make up days will now become
regular school days: March 31, April 1, and April 2. This will leave six (6) student
days that we have not made up. We will make a decision regarding whether we will
make any of these up when we see what more the weather has in store for us between
now and testing time.

In order to provide the teachers and students with as much instructional time as
possible prior to the CRCT, we will also be moving the test date of the CRCT out one
week. The testing window was originally set for April 22 through May 2. It will now
be April 29 through May 9.

There are many factors that play into decisions to change the school calendar. The
greatest of these are the state mandated testing windows and the need to recapture lost
instructional time. Please know that we have worked diligently to devise a plan that
will ultimately benefit our students in the most effective way. While no one enjoys
giving up planned holidays or a portion of their Spring Break, we believe that this is a
small sacrifice if it results in increased student achievement. In addition, while we
know that school is about more than just testing, we want our children to shine as
brightly as they can since they are compared to children from all over the state. The
children and the teachers have worked too hard to allow instruction time lost to
weather conditions and water issues to affect their progress. By making up these
three instructional days and moving the testing window out a week we will be gaining
eight additional instructional days prior to the tests.

I thank you in advance for your understanding and cooperation in making the 2013-
2014 school year a success in spite of the problems we have faced. By working
together we can help prepare our children for a bright future.

Mark Henson

Steve Stanley
Sandra Mercier
Bobby Bearden
Terry Bramlett
Lewis DeWeese

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