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Lakeland schools reset calendar

Lakeland students will now be in classes through June 10 as the school board voted to add two days to the calendar to make up for additional snow days.

The school board was given several options to consider as the district looked to ensure students would attend the required number of school days, a task made difficult by this year’s brutal winter. Other options included having students attend school for two Saturdays, adding one hour per day for 12 days in late April and using an online learning option.

The board was told that Saturday school days were a less popular option, and that adding an hour to the school day would affect afterschool programs and sporting events for some sports that do not have lighting for their fields. It was noted that the school had not used e-learning and that it would need to develop the program from scratch.

The ability to extend the school year was helped by the fact that the graduating class picked June 13 for their graduation date, giving the school a larger window of extra days before it would affect graduation.

Superintendent Risa Herber told the board that the district’s request for two additional waiver days was denied by the state, even though the state approved two earlier days that were requested. The district is also not allowed to “bank” additional time that students already attend classes, a situation Herber referred to as “ludicrous.” 

In other business:

The board voted to roll over administrator contracts through 2016.

The board voted 4-2 to roll over the superintendent’s contract to 2018. An initial vote to roll over the contract until 2019 ended in a 3-3 vote. Board member Sue Keenan noted that she struggled with the idea of a five-year contract and had no issues with Herber’s performance in that position. Board members David Larimer and Carey McKibben echoed similar thoughts on rolling over the contracts. “I don’t have any problems with any of our administrators,” McKibben added.

The board approved the resignation of Lakeland Middle School Principal Karen Lake, effective at the end of the school year.

The board accepted the retirement of Paula Lucas from Wolcott Mills Elementary. Lucas has worked in the corporation for 30 years.