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Originally published: 2013-12-02 14:00:21
Last modified: 2013-12-02 14:01:06

Selective cancellations better for students

As parents, consistency and scheduling is something that we rely upon in the educational system in order to have any hope of piecing together the often colorful puzzle of work, afterschool activities, child-care, social events and physical activity. When this schedule is disrupted because of school delays or cancelation, the puzzle obliterates into pieces as parents scramble to find coverage to be able to continue to work. Teachers are thrown off course in their academic planning while the inconsistency leaves students in an often emotionally anxious state.  And education. Education? Do we have any idea where the lack of consistent education leaves our kids and their futures?

I'm troubled by the fact that we've already experienced one delayed start and one missed day and the brunt of the winter season isn't anywhere near. Really?  Canceling school because of power outages when all power was restored by 8 a.m.? Delaying school because of "expected" weather? These were both unreasonable excuses to alter the normal school schedule.

When one area of the county is impacted by adverse weather, but the majority of the county is not, I don't see that as a reason to cancel school for the entire population.  Last year, when Hardin Park and Watauga High School were canceled because of a water main break, did that not set the precedent that schools could be dismissed selectively? Safety of our students and staff is certainly a priority, but it should not be an excuse to wreck school schedules from November to April every year.

I urge the members of our school board to consider the actions of the interim superintendent and the fact that our students are already needlessly missing school days.  

Surely a national search for a qualified candidate can result in someone to lead our school system who is able to creatively devise a plan to operate our schools so that the majority of students can attend the majority of the time.

Mary Sheryl Horine  Boone