fhs snow

Anywhere there is a parking lot in the area, such as this one as Fayetteville High School, odds are there will be at least one massive pile of snow. The snow that’s blanketed the area for nearly a month has forced the adjustment of the county school system’s calendar.

The phrase “inclement weather” has adopted quite a familiar ring to local school administrators and staff, students and parents in recent weeks.

In the wake of that sometimes-treacherous weather, Fayette County Schools officials have adjusted the schedule for the remainder of the school year.

According to Superintendent Chris Perkins, the end of the first semester has been moved from Jan. 19 to Jan. 22. The second semester will now start on Monday, Jan. 25.

So far in the 2009-10 school year, seven snow days have been recorded in Fayette County. Four snow days are plugged into the school calendar when it is originally made up. “Obviously, those (four) days will all be taken,” said Perkins.

That has prompted makeup days to be scheduled for students. Instead of an outside school environment (OSE) day on Good Friday, April 2, students will now go to school on that day.

The last day for students to be in the classroom was originally slated for Wednesday, June 2, but that will now be Monday, June 7. June 3, 4 and 7 — originally planned as instructional support and enhancement (ISE) days, with students out of the classrooms — will be altered to serve as instructional days. The June 3 ISE day for teachers has now been moved to June 8.

“For the most part, people have understood (the need to call off schools),” Perkins explained. “You can’t predict the snow, the ice, ...

“We need to be mindful of the safety of our students and staff.”

Perkins said officials stay abreast of current weather forecasts and work with Division of Highways officials to assess road conditions, in addition to performing field surveys themselves.

Also this year during bad weather events, they’ve participated in teleconferences involving the Homeland Security office and National Weather Service locations in Charleston, Blacksburg and Pittsburgh.

“We get a good picture (of what’s going on),” he said. “So far it’s been right on.”

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