Schools Make Plans to Cover Days Lost to Winter Storm

18 February 2014

ATHENS - Area college and K-12 students received plenty of snow days last week, but many will have to make up those days. The University of Georgia announced plans to have Saturday classes while other area colleges including the University of North Georgia will actually extend its academic calendar by a week. Athens Technical College has a plan in place that requires students to continue learning in case of missed classes, either using online materials or via e-mail.

At the K-12 and college level, individual schools have a large amount of discretion about whether to make up the days at all. State laws governing public K-12 schools have a normal year requirement of 180 days. During states of emergency, the state board of education can waive this requirement. State superintendent John Barge will ask the state board to invoke that law, said Matt Cardoza, a spokesperson for Barge.The plan Barge is going to propose to the board includes giving local school boards the flexibility not to make up the four days many schools lost during the February storm.

“I want to stress that it gives flexibility to not make up those days. Districts can certainly still make them up if they wish,” Cardoza said.

Surrounding counties including Clarke and Oconee have yet to make a decision regarding make-up days for students and staff.

At the University of Georgia, faculty has been given flexibility to choose how they will make up for lost instructional time. Options include through extra Saturday classes or online instruction.

“As faculty, you are in the best position to adapt your course plans and consider alternative strategies for achieving course objectives and goals,” according to an email sent to UGA faculty by Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs and Provost Pamela Whitten and Laura Jolly, vice president for instruction.

UGA teachers can use two Saturdays for make-up days - March 22 for Monday-Wednesday-Friday classes and labs, and March 29 for Tuesday-Thursday classes and labs.

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