Good Question: Snow days vs. remote learning?

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Editor’s note, this article has been updated to reflect a new statement sent to News10NBC by the Rochester City School District:

"RCSD is running snow days as it always has, students will stay home/no school. "

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC)—Snow days. Are they even really needed anymore?

This goes back to the start of the last school year when News10NBC’s Brennan Somers was the first to tell you local districts were looking at doing away with some, possibly all of them.

The pandemic brought up that conversation because covid changes and technology that lead to kids taking classes from home. The state education department even launched a pilot program giving schools the opportunity and flexibility to eliminate snow days. The no-snow-days pilot got extended again to cover this year.

Do districts plan to take part? Somers picked some at random to find out.

Greece Central: It’s going with the traditional approach by building snow days in the calendar. So if the winter weather is bad, it’s a day off. It was same policy as last year when Greece didn’t have to use any built-in snow days.

In the Finger Lakes: Canandaigua schools will have kids learning at home but only if they run out of emergency closure days. That plan was in place a year ago. It wasn’t used.

Somers also heard from Bo Wright, head of superintendents in Monroe County. He says there’s not going to be a consensus on this. It will be handled differently throughout the area.

If they have to use more than the two snow days set aside in his district at Rush-Henrietta remote learning is the next step.

How about Rochester?

Somers has been asking for some clarification on what the plan is going forward. Last year, the Rochester City School District told Somers even if the weather got so bad kids couldn’t go to class it wouldn’t have the need to declare a snow day with all the virtual changes.

Of course, a year ago, it was a much different situation than for city schools. Everything was remote only.


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