What to know about making up snow days

Graduations will occur on time; district could attempt to waive makeup days
By Brandon Gustafson | Feb 20, 2019

The roads are clear, almost all the snow has melted, and the weather forecast is looking a lot better (fingers crossed) than it had the first two weeks of February.

As mentioned in the last two issues of The Beacon, Mukilteo received a lot of snow. City offices were closed, events were cancelled or postponed, and getting around was difficult due to snow and ice on the roads.

One area that got hit especially hard by the rough weather was Mukilteo schools, which had multiple cancellations and delays.

The snow first started Sunday, Feb. 3, and stuck around for the most part until another few rounds hit starting Friday, Feb. 8.

Due to snow and ice, Mukilteo schools were cancelled Feb. 4, 5, and 6, had a two-hour delay on Feb. 7, and students were released early on Feb. 8.

The following week, Mukilteo schools were canceled Feb. 11 through Feb. 14, and had a two-hour delay on Feb. 15.

Mukilteo students, who have only been in school for four days in February, have all of this week off as well.

Monday was Presidents Day, and Tuesday through Friday was mid-winter break.

Some parents in the Mukilteo School District had wondered whether students would be going to school this week to help make up the snow days, but the school district released a statement on making up snow days late last week.

“The makeup days will not be taken from mid-winter break or from spring break,” the statement said. “Many parents and staff members have already made commitments for those days, so we do not want to cause them to change those plans at this late date.”

In the statement, the district said state law requires students attend school for 180 days, and that they have some dates in June to help make up the snow days.

“When this year’s calendar was developed, we set aside two days (Wednesday, June 19, and Thursday, June 20) as potential snow makeup days,” the district said. “Now, the scheduling of five additional make up days will need to be decided.”

The last day of school for the Mukilteo School District is set for Tuesday, June 18.

While the last day of school will be pushed back, the same can’t be said for high school graduation.

“The dates already established for high school graduation ceremonies will not change,” the school district said.

Additionally, the state’s Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction is allowed to grant exceptions for some canceled school days because they occurred during a state of emergency declared by Gov. Jay Inslee.

“Whether exceptions are granted, or not, the school district still must provide students with a minimum number of instructional hours,” the Mukilteo School District said. “The Mukilteo School District will consider all of these factors in deciding when the canceled school days will be made up. We will make an official announcement as soon as we can.”

Chris Reykdal, the state’s Superintendent of Public Instruction, released a statement on waiving snow days last week, acknowledging his office’s ability to waive missed school days, and to allow school districts to apply to waive school days because of Inslee’s emergency declaration.

“However, there is no legal authority to waive the mandatory average of 1,027 hours of instruction for students,” Reykdal said. “Even when a waiver is granted for missed days during a state of emergency declared by the governor, school districts are required to meet the average total instructional hour offerings.”

Most districts in the state have a schedule that more than ensures they meet 1,027 hours even if they reduce their total days by two or three, Reykdal said.

“When that can’t be achieved, districts will continue to meet their required hours by eliminating release days, adding days to the end of the year, or by any other means legally provided to local school boards.”

For more information, visit the Mukilteo School District’s website: mukilteoschools.org.



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