DILLSBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — Nothing about this school year has been by the books, but Northern York County School District is trying to amend that, by restoring one of childhood’s most simple joys.
Virtual learning has pretty much iced out the need for snow days, but for a district like Northern — who is known as the polar bears –, that just won’t fly.
“A good old fashioned, traditional snow day,” said Steve Kirkpatrick, Northern York County School District superintendent.
Parents are thankful for the return to tradition.
“So, much has been taken from our kids this year, and this is just something — I mean, we all enjoyed them as kids, and now, when the parents are outside cleaning up the snow, the kids are inside on school,” said Lisa Metzger, whose fifth-grader goes to school in the district.
Kirkpatrick admits, virtual learning has been helpful, and so far, they’ve dodged making up five snow days in June.
“It’s been productive. It’s enabled us to have a continuity of learning that we wouldn’t have otherwise, and it actually has saved us from adding days to the end of the year,” Kirkpatrick said.
However, nothing is more important than students’ well-being.
“Some mental health concerns — we know that we’re keeping an eye on kids, because things are different, and in some ways harder,” Kirkpatrick said.
Metzger agrees — this year hasn’t been easy for her cub.
“It was very tough. I mean, just trying to get them through — they don’t seem to be as engaged as when they’re in school,” Metzger said.
What students decide to do with their potential snow day is up to them.
“It could be as something as simple — let’s say, maybe some of our high school kids to just sleep in for a change,” Kirkpatrick said.
Although, that snooze may come sooner than later because snow is in the forecast.
“We certainly were aware that next week there could be the storm that gives us this day,” Kirkpatrick said.
“The kids are all off Monday for President’s Day, but maybe Tuesday or Wednesday they’ll have their first snow day this year,” Metzger said.
If a snow day is used, the district will use April 5 as a makeup day, which they’ve already designated in their school calendar.