Is the state requiring schools to meet for 180 full instruction days?

Updated: Feb. 8, 2021 at 11:03 PM CST
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - For the past year, schools in North Alabama have continued to educate students throughout the pandemic. We’ll learn more about their progress come February 10, during the State of the Schools address.

During a normal year, schools are required to provide at least 180 full instructional days.

William Tunnell with the Alabama Education Association said that requirement is also broken down into hours.

“A few years back our law was broadened to allow school systems to operate in a 1,080 hour time frame as well,” Tunnell said.

However, this year has been anything but ordinary. Due to the pandemic, there’s some flexibility to the requirement.

“Think about bad weather, tornadoes, or icy weather,” Tunnell said. “In those circumstances schools can apply for a waiver to the State Department of Education and they are actually forgiven those missed days.”

Tunnell said because of schedule changes and non-traditional learning, some students are falling behind’ however, he feels once we get through the pandemic, students will catch up.

According to a statement from a representative with Madison County Schools, the school is working on a plan to deal with the potential learning slide.

Director of Public Relations Tim Hall released a statement about their plan so far.

It reads, “The state has given us some flexibility regarding the days we need to be in class. Originally it was 180 but there is some room to work around that due to COVID.”

As for a potential learning slide, we are working on a plan that we will share soon. It will outline our response to any learning slide that may have occurred due to the pandemic.

Our goal is to make sure we provide the best possible education to students in the Madison County School System. We will continue to keep that a priority.”

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