School district adds minutes to make up for snow days

By WEEK Producer

Credit: MGN online

School district adds minutes to make up for snow days

February 25, 2014 Updated Feb 25, 2014 at 4:24 PM CDT

FISHERS, Ind. -- A school district near Indianapolis has chosen to make up the time missed in the classroom because of snow days by adding minutes to the school day.

But will the extra minutes add up to anything?

Heavy snow and extreme cold have taken time from kids classes and school calendars
Now districts are scrambling for the time to make it up.
Hamilton Southeastern Schools plan to do so minute by minute.

"Extend our school days so that we could make up instructional time prior to high stakes testing,” said Assistant Superintendent Dr. Beth Niedermeyer.

The board voted to lengthen the school day by a few minutes through the end of the year to gain back three of its snow days.

They said it is better than having kids make up the days in June.

Depending on their grade level, students will get 5 to 14 additional minutes in school each day.

Some board members questioned if an extra few minutes will really lead to learning.

"In three minutes, a student's questions can be answered more clearly since we're supposed to be making up instructional time, adding time back to the periods lost is the only plan that makes sense,” said Junior High Principal Crystal Thorpe.

The plan also gives kids more time in school before ISTEP testing.