Massena adds to spring break, Memorial Day weekend

Children enjoy the snow in this file photo. The Massena Central School District has used one snow day this year, along with two emergency days for COVID-related closings. Bob Beckstead/Watertown Daily Times

MASSENA — They’ve had to use them for COVID closures and snow days, but Massena Central School officials says they have three emergency days remaining for the year, and those have been added to the school calendar.

Two days will be used on April 12 and 13 to extend spring break, and the final day will be used on May 28 to extend the Memorial Day weekend.

Superintendent Patrick Brady said emergency days are built into the school calendar each year. Districts must provide 180 days of instruction in order to receive full Foundation Aid.

“It’s usually five, six or seven. Most times it’s six. This year it was seven. So there’s a 180-day calendar plus seven emergency days,” he said.

Mr. Brady said that, under the Massena Federation of Teachers contract, any days over 182 that are not used as emergency days are used as give-back days.

“Those are days when we don’t have students or teachers in the buildings,” he said.

He said two days were used for remote learning at the beginning of the year because of COVID numbers.

“Those remote days were the days teachers would have been here, but the students were not. So we used two of the seven days there. That brings us to the 182 in the contract, so now we have five days,” Mr. Brady said.

A third emergency day was used as a snow day, leaving four days remaining.

A fourth emergency is kept for the last day of school. At the high school level, “Rating Day” is considered one of the 180 days on the school calendar, but students do not attend. Kindergarten through grade eight students, however, must be in class that day.

“If you don’t, it would be considered one of the emergency days because it’s part of the 180 days,” Mr. Brady said.

He said the 180 days applies building-by-building and not the district as a whole.

“If you go below 180 days at any one of the buildings, then you lose state aid,” he said.

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