Monday, December 29, 2014

Philadelphia School District says no school Friday, Monday

Amid all the weather-related craziness, there's been some confusion over whether school will be held on Monday, Feb. 17 - President's Day, a long-scheduled holiday for students and staff. A service note from SEPTA erroneously said that Philadelphia public schools would be open to make up for all the snow days we've had this school year, and some folks have picked that up via social media and other news outlets.

Philadelphia School District says no school Friday, Monday

Contrary to what a SEPTA alert had said, the School District of Philadelphia WILL be closed as scheduled on Monday for Presidents´ Day. A student looks out the frosted window of a school bus as it moves down 19th Street on Tuesday, January 7, 2014. (MICHAEL S. WIRTZ / staff photographer)
Contrary to what a SEPTA alert had said, the School District of Philadelphia WILL be closed as scheduled on Monday for Presidents' Day. A student looks out the frosted window of a school bus as it moves down 19th Street on Tuesday, January 7, 2014. (MICHAEL S. WIRTZ / staff photographer)

UPDATE, 5:15 p.m.

All Philadelphia public schools are now also closed on Friday because of the continued poor conditions, officials said Thursday evening. No decision has been made yet on whether administrative offices will be closed on Friday.

ORIGINALLY: Amid all the weather-related craziness, there's been some confusion over whether school will be held on Monday, Feb. 17 - President's Day, a long-scheduled holiday for students and staff. A service note from SEPTA erroneously said that Philadelphia public schools would be open to make up for all the snow days we've had this school year, and some folks have picked that up via social media and other news outlets.

District spokesman Fernando Gallard has confirmed that schools will be CLOSED on Monday, as planned.

No official word yet on when the district will make up the snow days we've had. So far, school has been closed for five days because of inclement weather. One extra day was built into the district's calendar, so as of today, four days need to be made up.

Last March, the School Reform Commission adopted the 2013-14 school year calendar, with a caveat that if make-up days were needed, they would be held on April 14, 15 and 16, (all during Spring Break) then June 20 and beyond, depending on the number of days to be made up. So, in the absence of further district action, I imagine those would be the makeup days. However, I'm hearing that the district may be reconsidering the spring break makeup day plan, so stay tuned. I imagine a decision will need to be made rather soon, and I will report on it.

Stay safe in the snow!

UPDATE, 10 a.m.

Gallard got to the bottom of the "how did SEPTA get it wrong" mystery. Apparently, some charter schools will be open on Monday, and when the district - which is responsible for transportation for all city students regardless of whether they attend district, charter or private schools - contacted SEPTA to make sure they accepted charter students' old weekly passes on Monday, someone at SEPTA extrapolated that to mean that district schools were open.

Honest mistake, Gallard says, but still a mistake. Philadelphia School District remains closed on Monday - if you're a charter parent, check with your individual school for their decision.

 

About this blog

Inquirer reporter Kristen Graham writes the Philly School Files blog, where she covers education in Philadelphia, both in and out of the classroom.

During the school year, you’ll frequently find her hosting live chats about the district on Philly.com.

Please do pass along the scoop about what’s going on at your Philadelphia public school; Kristen welcomes tips, story ideas and witty banter.


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