School district seeks forgiveness for lost school days

  • Wednesday, May 28, 2014

There aren’t many days left in the school year, but Berkeley County School District has joined neighboring Dorchester County School District Two in asking the legislature to forgive missed school days due to the February ice storms.

May 30 is the last day of school, and while the school district has made up one and a half days so far, May 29 and 30 are slated to be extended to full days, and students are being asked to come in June 2, after the official end of the school year.

“It doesn’t make sense to run buses and run air-conditioning and bring the teachers in for something I think they did appropriately,” Berkeley County Sen. Paul Campbell told the Post and Courier.

Campbell said he received a call May 19 from Berkeley Superintendent Rodney Thompson to add that county to Dorchester Two’s bill request, which he added as an amendment to the bill Tuesday.

In March, the school board voted to use March 21, April 21, May 29, May 30, and June 2. March 21 and the May dates were extended from half days.

June 2 was already slated as an instructional makeup day on the 2013-2014 school calendar. In March, Doug Cooper, Phillip Obie and Kathy Schwalbe opposed using it over Memorial Day, May 26, citing graduation issues.

Four high schools will graduate prior to the date, and two graduate on the date, according to Superintendent Rodney Thompson.

Dorchester County Rep. Chris Murphy said the June school days in his district have caused “upheaval” among those parents who have already made summer plans.

“I feel confident that the bill is going to get through. To me it’s just a waste of taxpayers’ money,” Murphy said.

With May 30 fast approaching, Murphy said the bill is moving swiftly through legislation.

“We are trying to push this thing as fast as possible,” he said, “but I do feel good. We fast-tracked this.”

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