From classroom trends to school board decisions, Class Act will keep you updated on all the school issues followed by the Star Tribune’s education reporters. Contributors include Alejandra Matos, who covers Minneapolis; Kim McGuire, who covers the west metro; Erin Adler, who covers the south metro; Anthony Lonetree and Libor Jany, who cover St. Paul and the east metro, and Shannon Prather, who cover the north metro.

For several southwest metro districts, make-up day becomes snow day

Posted by: Erin Adler Updated: February 17, 2014 - 2:06 PM

For the Belle Plaine district, school was supposed to be in session on President's Day, to make up for four days lost to brutal cold this winter.

But when four inches of snow fell by 7 a.m., Superintendent Kelly Smith knew the roads wouldn't be safe -- and the make-up day became a snow day, another casualty of one of the most intense Minnesota winters in recent history.

He had initially called a two-hour late start, but then cancelled school entirely.

"We had five to six inches of snow and our rural roads were in tough shape," said Smith, adding that some of the streets in town were unsafe, with limited visibility, as well.

It was the same snowy story for the Jordan, New Prague, Tri-City United, LeSueur-Henderson and Sibley East districts on the southwest fringe of the metro area, all of which had make-up days scheduled and then called snow days. Waconia and Eastern Carver County both started two hours late.

Smith said that after all the days lost to cold, his goal was to make up three days as early in the calendar as possible, "but unfortunately, one of my first days is a snow day."

Students had a full-day of school last Friday, instead of a half, and they will have school March 14 and April 21, gaining back two instructional days in all.

And while Friday, June 6 is now looking like a potential make-up day, he's holding off on making any more scheduling decisions until winter is over, he said.

In some ways, having to call a snow day was appropriate, he joked. "It was only fitting, because this was the first day of "Snow Week" at the high school."
 

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