By Max Bowenfirstname.lastname@example.org
As December approaches, so to does the tried and true tradition of the snow day.
On stormy evenings, families check the news reports or await the e-mail notification that school has been canceled. No studying, no tests, just a day to chill and enjoy the frosty landscape.
But, like many other things, that too is being taken away in the time of COVID-19. Unless a snowstorm knocks out power, school won’t be canceled in North Attleborough. Superintendent Scott Holcomb said that guidance from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education [DESE] has given districts the choice of having snow days as usual, or simply making them remote learning days. In North Attleborough, students learn remotely three days a week, and so the structure is in place.
“As you can imagine, the state is divided,” he said at the School Committee meeting on Nov. 2. “It’s a no-win situation.”
The standard practice is that in times of inclement weather, the superintendent make the choice whether or not to have school. Oftentimes factors such as road conditions are taken into account. Snow days are made up at the end of the school year, and most districts have a few built into the calendar.
Shruti Srinivasan, one of the student representatives on the School Committee, asked that if this happens, will students have remote classes with their teachers or just be assigned work. Holcomb said that remote classes held on snow days would be similar to the ones done on Wednesday. There would be morning and afternoon meetings with teachers, and work to be done during the day.
“We want to make sure we’re all working hard together,” he said.