April Snow Days = 21 Extra Minutes Of School A Day In Superior

SUPERIOR, Wis. – The days are getting longer for students within the Superior School District.

Snow days on April 11 12 need to be made up before the end of the year.

So this means starting Monday, April 29, school will start 10 minutes earlier.

Bus pick-ups will happen 10 minutes earlier as well.

The end of the school day will go 11 minutes later each day, and that’s on top of seven extra minutes already in place at the end of the day for a snow day from earlier this winter.

Below is the full e-mail sent out to parents Thursday by Superintendent Amy Starzecki:

Dear Families of the Superior School District,
This message is an update on how we will be making up the snow days that were called on April 11 and 12.
Deciding when to call a snow day is always difficult. Ultimately, we based our decisions on the National Weather Service forecast and road conditions. We have many more walkers and rural bus routes as compared to other districts to take into consideration. Student safety is always the primary factor for making the final decision. Thank you for your understanding and flexibility during last week’s challenging weather!
The Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI) requires all Wisconsin public schools to provide a certain amount of instructional minutes each school year. All school districts received the following a message from DPI this winter:

For a little context, the Wisconsin State Superintendent does not have the authority to waive hours of instruction statewide (you may have read a news story about the governor in Minnesota giving a blanket waiver to all school districts—the Wisconsin Governor also does not have this authority).  School boards, under Wisconsin Stat. 118.38, may request a waiver from DPI after a public hearing is held in the district. Historically, the department has not waived the hours and minutes requirement through this process. We have in the past waived the 180-day requirement (this is no longer a requirement in statute), but never the associated hours and minutes.  DPI does not anticipate approving waivers for hours and minutes due to this week’s weather. Districts do have local flexibility to determine the means by which they meet the hours and minutes standards.
Many districts in Wisconsin have experienced an excessive amount of snow days this year (some more than 10).  Some districts have had to do a combination of the following: add minutes to school days, reduce spring break days, eliminate staff development days and add days in June. Additionally, it is important to note we are unable to hold school on holidays (Good Friday, Memorial Day) due to employment contracts that allow for those days as holidays for employees.
I have been working with staff all week to determine logistically what makes the most sense for making up these days. There are many complicating factors we considered as we tried to make the best decision for our students, including before/after school activities, transportation, food services, and construction projects. Given these factors, we will be adding minutes to the school day as opposed to adding school days at the end of the school year.
We will be adding 10 minutes to the start of school and 11 minutes after school for a total of 21 additional minutes each day starting Monday, April 29.  This is in addition to the 7 minutes already added this winter. Starting April 29, students need to arrive at school 10 minutes earlier than they currently do now.  If they ride the bus they will need to be at their bus pick up 10 minutes earlier than their current pickup time. Schools will be communicating directly with families about the exact start and end times.  Elementary before and after school programs will begin and end at the same time (7:00 a.m. start time, 5:30 p.m. end time).
If you have questions, please contact your school principal.  Again, thank you for your understanding. Have a good weekend and a great rest of the school year!
Amy Starzecki

District Administrator

Superior School District


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