Students may not have to make up snow days

A previous version of this story stated waiver days would mean less school district employees. However, it only applies to some district employees. Those under contracts would still be working.

POULSBO — Students in the North Kitsap School District will have to wait and see if they need to make up those snow days.

District administration has made no decision regarding makeup days after a storm that closed schools in Kitsap County Jan. 18-20. District communications director Robyn Chastain said the first thing the district is going to do is wait to see if there are more snow days.

The district allows for one school week to be made up each year. Last year, the district made up days missed due to a storm in November 2010.

There are two options administration can choose from: apply for a state waiver or make up the missed days. Instructional minutes will be put into consideration when making the decision. A state waiver is available if the governor declares a state of emergency, which she did after the January storm. Students may not have to make up snow days if they receive the minimum amount of instructional days before the school year ends. The minimum instructional hours for students in grades seven to 12 is at least 1,080, 1,000 for students in grades one through six and 450 for kindergarten.

Though NKSD has not made a decision, other districts in Kitsap have. According to the Port Orchard Independent, the South Kitsap School District extended its schedule by four days to make up for those missed by the storm. And Central Kitsap School District administration plans to add three days to the end of the school year; however, the district has not ruled out waiver days, according to a report by the Central Kitsap Reporter.

A waiver would not only mean fewer school days for students, but fewer work days for some district employees. Employees would not be compensated for waiver days, which would mean cost savings for the district.


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