School district OKs plan for catching up on days lost to storm

By Bobby Bryant, Editor, editor@newsandpress.net

There’s good news and not-as-good news for Darlington County public-school students wondering how they would have to make up for class days lost in Hurricane Florence’s floods.

The good news: Previously scheduled school holidays won’t be changed. Spring Break (April 22-26) won’t be changed.

The not-as-good news: The last day of school before summer, June 7, will be a flood make-up day. And at least one school board member isn’t happy about that.

“What’s the use of coming one day just to say you’re coming?” asked Warren Jeffords of Lamar.
No learning is going to take place that day with summer so close, he said. “That June 7 is a wasted day, I promise you.”

The Darlington County school board approved an updated school calendar Oct. 8 to work in make-up days for time lost when county schools were shut down because of the hurricane’s floods and the threat of more floods.

A total of seven “student days” were lost, said school district spokeswoman Audrey Childers.
One of those lost days was made up Sept. 21, which was supposed to have been a day for parent-teacher conferences, she said. The others will be made up according to this plan, Childers said:

Nov. 5 was to be a professional-development day; now it will be a storm make-up day. Feb. 15 was originally slated as a parent-teacher conference day; it now will be a make-up day.
March 7 and 8 were originally to be inclement-weather make-up days, with no classes; they are now flood make-up days. April 19 was originally scheduled as an inclement-weather make-up day; it is now a regular class day. June 7 was to be a staff work day; it now will be a flood make-up day.

Childers said the district tried to revise the calendar as gently as possible.
“We tried to create a logical solution . . . without significantly disrupting anyone’s calendar.”

A revised calendar is on the district’s web site at darlington.k12.sc.us.

In other business, the school board received updates on plans to build three new schools in the county, opening in 2020. Early work is on track, and officials feel “very comfortable” about the process, said a spokesman for Brownstone Construction Co. The schools are planned for Darlington, Hartsville and Lamar.

Author: Rachel Howell

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