CLINTON — Unfavorable weather has taken its toll on the Gateway area and local schools are facing the burden that’s been brought on by the snow and cold this winter season.
So far, both the Camanche and River Bend school districts have canceled school at least five times because of snow, ice or cold, and each district has its own way of dealing with it.
“(For us) make up days are just added on to the school calendar at the end of the year,” Camanche Superintendent Tom Parker said. “That works out for us because then people know when we have a cancellation, that missed day just gets added to the end. It’s pretty much common knowledge and it makes it easier for parents to know when those days are made up.”
River Bend also adds missed days to the end of the school year, but school calendar days are handled a little differently in Illinois than in Iowa.
According to the Illinois State Board of Education, a provision in the state law known as “Act of God” days, says that if a school exceeds its allotted five emergency days, they may not be required to make up any additional cancellations due to forces beyond their control.
While River Bend Superintendent Chuck Holliday doesn’t expect the district to exceed the five emergency days, if the troublesome weather continues, River Bend must go through a request process with the Illinois State Board of Education before those make-up days can be waived from the end of the school year.
“Should we have to cancel more instructional days this school year, the board of education has the option of rescheduling the days or requesting Act of God Days through the Illinois State Board of Education,” said Holliday in a press release. “Act of God Days, if requested by the local board of education and approved by the Illinois State Board of Education, allow a local school district not to make-up weather days beyond five.”