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Calamity Hours to Replace Calamity Days for Ohio Schools
COLUMBUS (Jen French/Kate Liebers) -- Make-up days could be a thing of the past, as Ohio schools could have access to 10 to 30 calamity days next year.
The change is related to districts' requirement to measure instruction in terms of hours, rather than days.
This year, many central Ohio schools burned through their five calamity days only a few weeks into winter. While some schools resorted to online learning (the state allows three online learning days per year), Ohio Gov. John Kasich pushed legislation to grant schools four additional calamity days.
If passed, Kasich's proposal bill would only apply to the current school year. Next year, schools are to adopt an hour-based schedule that effectively reduces the amount of mandatory class time.
The current law mandates that schools be in session for 182 days, which, depending on the district, amounts to about 1,200 hours of instruction per year.
The new law instead mandates a minimum of 1,001 instructional hours. Consequently, a school could take up to 30 days off without having to tack on "make-up" days to the end of the academic calendar.
Occasions during which a school would be permitted to close include hazardous weather condition, law enforcement emergencies, inoperability of school buses or other equipment necessary to the school's operation, damage to a school building, or other temporary circumstances due to utility failure rendering the school building unfit for school use.
Click for more information about the new hour-based schedule.