KEYSER - When Mineral County students return to school on Jan. 2, they will find some tweaks have been made to the current school calendar. They may also see some changes in weather-related two-hour delays.

By Liz Beavers
lbeavers@newstribune.info
Tribune Managing Editor
KEYSER - When Mineral County students return to school on Jan. 2, they will find some tweaks have been made to the current school calendar. They may also see some changes in weather-related two-hour delays.
Superintendent Troy Ravenscroft announced the changes recently during the Mineral County Board of Education meeting.
The first change will actually tack on two extra hours to the students’ Christmas break, as Ravenscroft has scheduled a planned two-hour delay for Jan. 2 in order to help get the school buildings ready for the students’ return.
“We want to make sure the heat is back up to par,” he said, noting that it takes awhile for the buildings to warm back up after extended breaks like Christmas.
In February, a Faculty Senate Day on Feb. 14  was originally scheduled as no school for students, but is now an instructional day with a three-hour early dismissal. The same change has been made for April 9.
May 4, which had originally been a Professional Learning Day for teachers, with no school for students, is now a regular instructional day with students in the classroom.
Ravenscroft said the changes would allow more flexibility in case there are a lot of weather-related cancellations during the winter.
“Should we have eight to nine cancellations, we can add the Professional Learning Days at the end of the calendar and let the students out early,” he said. “If they’re not needed, June 3, 4, and 5 could be PL days.
“In other words, we would be extending the calendar, but for staff only.”
Currently, the last day for students is scheduled for June 5, but an abundance of cancellations could keep them in the classroom until June 30.
Ravenscroft also told the board members he is looking into the possibility of making use of weather-related three-hour delays if needed.
“It gives us almost until 8 o’clock to make the call (to cancel or not),” he said, noting that there have been times when the weather improved enough later in the morning that the students could have gone to class.
“I’ve asked our principals to propose a plan,” he said, noting that he won’t be calling any three-hour delays “until I know the schools are ready.”