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Originally published: 2013-03-26 15:32:08
Last modified: 2013-03-26 16:00:38

WCS shortens spring break

Watauga County Schools will shorten spring break to three days, the school system announced Tuesday afternoon.

Students and staff were originally scheduled to be out April 1-5 but now must return to school Thursday, April 4 and Friday, April 5.

The school system pledged not to shorten spring break any further.

The schools have missed 18 days this school year due to winter weather. As of Tuesday, the last day for students is now June 11. That date could change again if additional school closures occur.


In a statement Tuesday, Superintendent David Kafitz noted that the decision to shorten spring break was made reluctantly but that it was the best available option for meeting state school calendar requirements.

Cutting spring break has been a possibility throughout the school year as part of the make-up plan.

Principals will have additional discretion in granting excused absences for students who are absent on April 4-5 due to prior commitments, according to the school system. Parents will still need to send a note explaining the reasons a student is not present on these dates.   

Watauga County Schools last cut into spring break in 2009-10, when it was entirely eliminated, said public information director Marshall Ashcraft. Schools were closed 26 days for winter weather that year, he said.


The changes to the school calendar are being communicated to parents by the school system's automated phone messaging system, by letters being sent home with students, by e-mail notification for parents who have activated that service, through the school calendar information posted on the WCS website, and by notification to local news media.