Alta-Aurelia school board considers extending break, tabled for later

Friday, December 18, 2020

Alta-Aurelia School Board members discussed a proposal from Alta Elementary School teachers that the holiday break be extended by one week at their school. The matter was discussed at the December 15th School Board meeting.

Sherry Harms and Sherry DeRoos, 4th grade teachers at the school, presented the board with a letter signed by school faculty and staff who are in favor of the proposal. The request is more for students and families, they said.

If the Board approves, instructional time would need to be made up and the last day of school would be pushed to the beginning of June. “We could tack these on to the end of the year,” School Superintendent William Walters said. If there are snow days to make up, the last day would be pushed even further into June.

A discussion occurred with many in agreement that school personnel, students and families are tired, exhausted and need a break. “They are tired. They are,” Walters said.

One board member’s opinion is that extra time off will unfortunately give people more time to contract or spread COVID-19 as they travel and interact with others over the holidays.

“I’m really torn on what we should do.” Board Member Brad Rohwer said.

“It’s very tough. You’re trying to predict the future,” Walters said, adding that the graduation date would not be affected.

A decision was not made, but the School Board has scheduled a meeting for later this week to discuss further and reach a decision.