Valley schools count down calamity days with latest round of closings

Local News

It was another day of school closings across the Valley. There have been several of them so far this year, and winter isn’t over yet.

Wednesday marked the fifth calamity day for Springfield Schools in Mahoning County. They have two more before they have to make them up. That means a longer school by a few days in June.

Schools in Pennsylvania get no calamity days, meaning any days they miss will have to be made up. That could be losing a holiday or adding days at the end of the school year.

When it comes to testing and curriculum, planning ahead by teachers is the only way to keep students on track. Springfield Superintendent Thomas Yazvac said it’s hard to say what impact the days off will be on the students, but said he’s confident the students can catch up when they return to class. 

“We also have a few tutors in our elementary and middle school and high schools, so if we need to push a few students that way to get them caught up we will do that,” said Springfield Superintendent Thomas Yazvac.

It isn’t just inconvenient for teachers, parents take a hit too. When kids get snow days, they don’t. For Amy Brungard, a snow day means adding a lot of phone calls to her morning rush to find daycare for her five kids. She’s also a teacher. 

“I try to go with the flow, but it is an inconvenience because you have to make other arrangements,” Brungard said.

Some parents have no choice but to hire a babysitter or have the kids tag along with them to work. Ashley Kroll, at times, is faced with that situation. 

“It’s reasonable like today, the roads were pretty bad. I wouldn’t want to see buses on them when they’re really bad,” she said. 

Parents and schools agree that when driving get dangerous, it is better to make the time up later than to take the chance.

“We have to err on the side of student safety and staff safety if it’s going to be a matter of risking a child getting on the school bus because roads might be a little slick. It’s not worth it, and parents appreciate that,” Yazvac said.

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