ADE Director's Communication Memo Form

Memo Number : COM-09-119

Date Created : 02/10/2009


Co-op Directors
Secondary Principals
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Type of Memo: Informational
Response Required: Yes
Section:   Communications - Julie Thompson, Director
Inclement Weather

Regulatory Authority:

Contact Person:
Julie Johnson Thompson

Phone Number:


Many school districts in Arkansas have had to miss instructional days due to inclement weather, most recently and expansively because of the ice storm that blanketed much of Arkansas in late January.

The state's Standards of Accreditation require all public school districts to offer 178 instructional days of six hours instructional time each year. Therefore, days missed must be made up. Following are options for doing so:
* Using any inclement-weather days already built into the calendar.
* Using previously scheduled teacher-work days as instructional days.
* Holding instructional days on upcoming scheduled holidays such as President's/Bates Day, Good Friday, Memorial Day.
* Using part or all of spring break.
* Adding days to the end of the school year.
* Attending school on Saturdays.

While the situation is still being assessed, at this point there are no plans to issue a blanket policy for making up days or a blanket waiver to excuse the days. School districts that have utilized all the options and still cannot meet the 178-day requirement may petition the Arkansas State Board of Education (ASBE) for a waiver from the requirement.

To request a waiver, send a letter as soon as possible to:
Dr. Ken James, Commissioner
Arkansas Department of Education
Four Capitol Mall
Little Rock, AR 72201

Please be sure to include in the letter the number of days for which a waiver is requested as well as a detailed outline of how missed days have or will be made up. The first set of hearings for waivers will be heard at the March 16, 2009, meeting of the Arkansas State Board of Education.


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