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Sunday, December 21, 2014

After Sandy, Bellmore schools adjust schedules
(Page 2 of 3)

In North Bellmore, school will be in session on Jan. 18, which was formerly a staff development day. The February break will also be cut down, as Feb. 19 to 22 will be instructional days in each of the district’s five schools.

After the storm, Goldstein said dates on which reports cards were issued and parent/teacher conferences days were held also had to be adjusted. Now that the calendar is set, the superintendent explained that he expects families will adjust travel plans they may have made for February and send their children to school.

“Most people understand that if they planned to go away, they should cancel their plans,” he said. “That is certainly the expectation.”

Both the new North Bellmore and Bellmore calendars are similar to that of the Bellmore-Merrick Central High School District, according to Famularo. Bellmore’s middle- and high-schoolers will also have class from Feb. 20 to 22.

In the Central High School District plan, which was passed on Dec. 5, Jan. 22 and 23 were also made full days of instruction. Officials explained on the district website that the academic year could not be extended in June, as school districts are not permitted to schedule instructional days after state Regents exams.

The law requires that schools schedule a minimum of 180 days of session, officials said on the Central District website. They added that the state would reduce aid for each day a district fell below the minimum.

Local superintendents expressed concerns about meeting the requirement if the winter is filled with severe weather. At its December meeting, the North Bellmore Board of Education announced that June 24, April 1 and March 25 would be used as makeup days if snow or severe winter weather forced additional school closings. Goldstein said he wanted to make the community aware of possible snow makeup days in advance, as experts suggest that New York could see severe weather in the cooler months.

“It is expected to be a bad winter,” he said. “We at least wanted to let people know what we’re considering before they make plans.”

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