County schools pass state snow day limit
ARENAC COUNTY — The three Arenac County school districts have been forced to cancel school more than half a dozen times this winter, surpassing the state’s six-snow day limit.
Darren Kroczaleski, superintendent for Standish-Sterling and interim superintendent for Arenac Eastern, said both districts have had eight snow days so far this winter, which he said was an unusual number.
“Usually you’ll run four to six snow days a year, but with this year’s winter — of those eight snow days, five were for ice,” Kroczaleski said. “We had to cancel because of the ice, either on the back roads or on the asphalt roads.”
He added that ice days tend to be a problem in March, not January and February. This year’s shifting weather patterns have caused snow to melt, get rained on, and freeze into sheets of ice over the roads, Kroczaleski said, causing safety issues and canceling snow.
Au Gres-Sims has closed seven times for snow days so far this winter — one day in the first semester, and six in the second. Superintendent Jeff Collier said the district was originally planning on ending its school year June 6, but will now be bumping that back to June 7.
AE has designated snow make-up days in its semester, so school will not be extended past its expected completion date. Kroczaleski said April 26 and May 10 were set aside for classes in case of snow days.
SSC will add its two make-up days at the end of the semester, on May 31 and June 3. The semester was originally expected to end May 30, Kroczaleski said. Assuming the weather in March does not force any additional snow days to occur, the semester will end only a couple days later than originally expected.
“I’m hoping we have no more snow days,” he said. “I’m hoping we can just finish out the year, but you never know. It’s still early — it’s still the first week of March and there’s a lot of bad weather yet we could receive.”