Senate voting on matter Tuesday
3:11 pm
Tue March 11, 2014

Local School Leader Favors Scheduling Flexibility

Supt. Kelli Jacobi
Credit Rhinelander School District
  The Wisconsin Senate is voting on a bill  tossing out the 180 day requirement for schools to hold classes.   Classes would still have to be held for certain numbers of hours -- but schools could hold longer days to get those hours in.  The issue came to the forefront in January, when most Wisconsin schools were closed for at least four days due to the coldest winter in two decades.  Small-town schools say it would also be a big cost-saver for them, because it would save on busing costs over land areas which are much larger than bigger-city school districts.  Superintendent Kelli Jacobi says Rhinelander has had a waiver on the requirement for several years. She says she favors the local flexibility in scheduling...  ".....Rhinelander currently has a waiver with the state so we are  already at 175 school days, student school days, per year so it wouldn't impact us immediately, but it will as soon as our waiver is up...." Jerry Fiene of the Wisconsin Rural Schools Alliance says even one fewer class day would save a rural district thousands of dollars in busing costs.  He also said fewer school days during the coldest months could save thousands for cash-strapped schools in utility bills. (Thanks for help, Wheeler News-Learfield Data)