Dear LMCS School Community:
RE: "Remote Snow Days"
Each year the district incorporates several emergency closing days into our Board approved annual academic calendar. Schools are required to be in session a minimum of 180 days and 900 hours for grades K-6 and 990 hours for grades 7-12. If Schools fail to meet the minimum required days and/or hours of instruction, a portion of their State Aid can be withheld.
Traditionally once a district has used up all of its emergency closing days those instructional days are made up by taking back previously scheduled vacation days. Last year, the state Education Department approved the use of "Remote Snow Days" as an option for emergency closing days.
Family vacations and holiday gatherings with family and friends can be critically important in the social and emotional development of children. In an effort to preserve this important family time the district has taken steps to develop a "Remote Snow Day" instructional plan that will be implemented once all of our allotted emergency closing days for the 2022-23 school year have been utilized.
While nothing can replace the quality of in-person learning that occurs each day in school, there is value in continuing to provide a certain level of synchronous and asynchronous educational activities through remote instruction.
As of today (3/10/2023) we currently have 1 remaining emergency closing day. Once that traditional "snow day" is used, we will be piloting the use of "Remote Snow Days" for the remainder of the 2022-23 school year as a possible alternative to taking back scheduled vacation days. We will closely monitor the effectiveness of any Remote Snow Days to determine if using them in subsequent years makes sense.
Regardless of the weather, next Wednesday, March 15, 2023 will be a "Remote Snow Day". As some of you may know there is a leaking water main that provides town water to all the homes and businesses on the school side of the Willowemoc creek. The Town of Rockland will be shutting off the water for several hours beginning at 8am on March 15th to make the necessary water main repairs. Without water to the building, school cannot be in session and will therefore be closed. Prior to Wednesday's Remote Snow Day the district will be sending students home with the necessary educational materials and technology devices to implement our Remote Snow Day instructional plans.
Accompanying this letter is some additional information regarding remote instruction along with expectations for both staff and students during these "remote snow days."
John Evans, Superintendent