Muncie IN schools make up snow days in June
Calendar in 2014-15 has longer fall break, also makes up snow days in June
By Rick Yencer
MUNCIE, INDIANA (NEWS) - Like other Indiana school systems, Muncie schools will make up a record number of snow days in June.
And the upcoming 2014-15 school calendar will do the same with an Aug. 13-June 1 school year and a longer fall vacation Oct. 13-17.
Ermalene Faulkner, MCS chief academic officer, offered the calendar recommendations taking into consideration teacher preferences and surveys of school patrons.
Muncie lost nine days to snow so far this year and the state waived only two.
Glenda Ritz, state superintendent of public instruction, offered some options like adding an extra hour to some school days or having Saturday school to make up the time instead of just extending the calendar.
Pay issues, teacher schedules and extracurricular activities made extending individual school days unworkable, Faulkner said, who said the fourth quarter of the school year would be 48 days.
Some teachers like Maria French of Wilson Middle School, said the makeup time was needed now to prepare for spring testing like ISTEP and IREAD-3.
Adding an hour onto a school day or even Saturday school would help students now, she said.
Faulkner said the state extended testing for Muncie schools. ISTEP for grades 3-8 will be March 10-19, a week later and IREAD 3 will be March 18-20.
And graduation dates will be moved to June 16-17.
School board member Robert Warrner, a retired teacher, said Saturday classes were not well attended even at the university, where he now teaches.
Other school systems like Brown County and Hamilton Southeastern recent extended the school calendar to make up snow days while others went to longer days or Saturday.
The 2014-15 calendar the school board also adopted offered a few changes from the current school year. That longer fall vacation seemed to be what parents and teachers wanted while the Aug. 13-June 1 year coincides with other area schools.
The school board also agreed to partner with Ivy Tech Community Community College to provide early college education programs, keeping the education local.
And there was no action to end transportation service to students in three years until the Indiana General Assembly decided to postpone imposing protected taxes that would deplete transportation funds to Muncie schools.
There had been some talk of going to a balanced calendar like