Holt Public Schools lose school days in battle against winter weather

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Miranda Chavez
Holt Journal Staff Writer

This year, Holt Public Schools have exceed the allotted number of six snow days for the 2013-2014 school year, which has begun causing a unique set of problems for parents, students and administrators.

With the inclement weather plaguing Michigan this winter, children have not only been unable to enjoy their time off, but will be responsible for making them up.

Recently, the Michigan Department of Education has taken the stance that schools should make up snow days by adding additional full days instead of by adding extra time on to current school days.

Melissa Usiak, principal at Sycamore Elementary, said the school district would make the ultimate decision on how to make up the lost time.

Usiak said she favors adding extra full days. She said that adding time to current days causes an onslaught of issues for Holt Public Schools.

Sycamore and Elliott elementary schools are on a balanced calendar. This means that they go to school year round and have a different set of breaks than traditional schools.

Usiak said this gives them a shorter summer break than traditional schools, and while she agrees with adding full days she would like the opportunity to get more creative with when to add them.

“We have a couple of half days at the end of the year. It would be nice if we could turn them into whole days to make up the time,” said Usiak.

Usiak said Holt Senior and Junior High, use the buses districts buses for sporting events after school. If extra time is added on to the elementary school schedule this creates a conflict with who uses the buses.

Buses wait outside Holt's 9th grade campus for students.

Buses wait outside Holt’s 9th grade campus for students.

Jennifer Huston has three children in Holt Public Schools: Jacob, 13, at Holt Junior High; Spencer, 8, at Horizon Elementary and Riley, 4, at Sycamore Elementary.

Huston said, “I think preferably I would prefer the days, because I feel like a couple minutes at a time is not really adding a lot.”

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