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County School System Waivers Not Needed to Meet 180 Separate Days of Instruction

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April 09, 2015

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - The West Virginia Board of Education (WVBE) today voiced strong support for 180 separate days of instruction for students. The board discussed the topic during its monthly meeting in Charleston. Under West Virginia state law, all schools are required to provide 180 days of meaningful instruction.

"As board members, our job is to ensure that the state's 280 thousand public school students receive a stellar education," said Gayle Manchin, WVBE president. "Students attending school and participating in engaging and innovative lessons is vital as we progress with the One Voice. One Focus: All Students Achieving vision plan. The WVBE will not waver in its support of the law requiring 180 separate days of instruction."

In March, the board approved the development of a process for allowing counties to waive instructional days due to a high number of missed days resulting from inclement weather and other unforeseen circumstances. In some cases, school systems canceled nearly 20 days. The board asked county superintendents to review their current calendars and work with their parents, teachers and communities to determine the best options to make up lost instruction. The board considered approving county waivers that included the use of West Virginia Day and Memorial Day as well as Saturday school to make up instructional time. In total, the WVBE received 27 waivers.

"The good news is that we did not have to waive any days," added Manchin. "As part of this waiver process, the board learned that all 55 county school systems could reach the 180 day mark by June 25. Therefore, it was not necessary to grant waivers as school is permitted by law to be in session through June 30. In addition, the state superintendent of schools did not need to utilize the federal disaster provision."

For more information, contact Liza Cordeiro in the West Virginia Department of Education Communication Office at 304-807-6988 or 304-558-2699.

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