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Oconee Schools to Delay Dismissal for Eclipse

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Oconee County Public School officials announced that they will dismiss 30 minutes later than usual on August 21 because of the solar eclipse.

Claire Miller, Oconee County Chief Academic Officer, announced in a news release on Wednesday that the elementary schools will dismiss at 3 p.m. that day, and the county’s high schools and middle schools will follow at 4 p.m.

The school district will also provide its roughly 7,800 students and 1,000 employees with eclipse glasses. Only during the brief period when a solar eclipse is total is it safe to look at the sun with the naked eye. But the eclipse is not going to be quite total in the Athens and Oconee County, areas; it will be 99 percent.

Many other area school systems, including Gwinnett, Madison and Barrow counties, are also planning to delay the end of the school day Aug. 21 so students and employees can watch the progress of the eclipse.

According to the University of Georgia Geography Department, the eclipse will be at peak darkness around 2:38 p.m.