MS may consider shortening school year due to winter weather

JACKSON, MS (WMC) - Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant issued a State of Emergency for school districts impacted by winter weather.

Bryant said because of ice and prolonged subfreezing temperatures, many school districts within the state have had to cancel schools.

Bryant added because of this, some schools may face a scenario where going to school for all 180 days may not be economically feasible.

Therefore, the State Board of Education will review plans for altering the school calendar.

DeSoto County Schools have scheduled all of their makeup days, but will have to extend the end of the school year deeper into May should they need any more snow days.

Amy Gross is like many parents who think DeSoto County Schools made the right call to cancel classes again Friday. Most main roads have cleared, but many back roads were still covered in ice Thursday when the call was made.

"Definitely wouldn't want my kids on a school bus in this kind of weather," Gross said. "I think it was safety for kids not only on school buses but also for the kids driving the cars."

Cory Uselton, DeSoto County Schools Superintendent, sent parents a letter Friday explaining Governor Bryant's issued state of emergency. He said even though the county has used all five banked snow days for the spring semester, the state has to decide if and how snow-affected districts will make days up.

"We're hopeful we won't have to make those days up and that is the reason that we pursued the state of emergency," Uselton said.

The plan before Friday was for kids to make up all five snow days, but for now, he said things may change. Superintendent Uselton said he does not regret canceling classes, citing safety.

"Our bus drivers taking 40-50 kids to school, it would have been too treacherous," he said. "The safety of our students and our employees and our parents, that's my top priority and I'm not going to sacrifice that."

You can read Bryant's full proclamation below:

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