Pocahontas Board of Ed Keeps 4 1/2 Days a Week Schedule

The Pocahontas County Board of Education received a suggestion at their February 16th meeting that they approve all grades except for high school returning to full five day-a-week in-school instruction. Because of the difficulties the high school would have returning to that schedule, it was not included in the proposal.

After discussing the merits of doing this for K through 8 grades, the board members decided to keep things consistent for all grades by retaining the current four-and-a-half-day schedule with half days on Wednesdays for the rest of this school year.

The board meeting began with the first of two public hearings on next school year’s calendar. Superintendent Beam explained the calendar. The 2021-2022 school year will begin with employees reporting to open their classrooms on Thursday August 12th and Friday the 13th. Teachers will then receive two days of continuing education on Monday the 16th and Tuesday the 17th. Here are highlights from the calendar.

  • Students’ first day back will be on Wednesday, August 18th.
  • Students will have off Columbus Day, October 11th since teachers will have a professional learning day.
  • The Thanksgiving break will be the full week of November 22nd through the 26th.
  • The first semester will end on Wednesday, December 22nd which will be a professional learning day for teachers, who will have the option of working off that day by extra hours done earlier. Students will be off for that day.
  • The official Christmas break will be December 23rd though January 2, 2022 -returning on January 3rd.
  • Students will be off February 16th; March 23rd; and April 15th (Good Friday) which are professional learning days for teachers;
  • Spring Break will the entire week of April 18th.
  • Graduation will be on May 22nd
  • The last scheduled day for students will be May 25th unless excess snow days delays that.
  • The last scheduled day for employees is June 9th.

Beam said the first five snow days do not need to be made up. The next six snow days beyond those will be made up on the first six days after May 25th, unless the schools are permitted to use snow packs as remote learning on those days. They are still waiting to receive permission to do that from the State Board of Education.

Additionally, at the Meeting, Mr. Beam reported that the WV SSAC has waived the 2.0 grade average for student athletes to participate in sports, but they will still have to bring their grades up to that level by March 19th. He also commended the staff and bus drivers at Hillsboro Elementary School for stepping up during a recent power outage at the school.

Linda Beverage, Michelle Wilfong, Joe Riley, and Kathy Mason briefed the board on their efforts to help seniors struggling to meet graduation requirements and to help others with their college applications.

Lynne Bostic briefed the board on efforts to develop a virtual education program for the county schools.

The board also approved personnel actions.

Be sure to listen for part 2 of this meeting story, where we will describe a rather heated Delegations session in which some parents expressed anger and outrage at what they perceived to be the use of reading materials at the high school which they believe promotes the controversial “Critical Race Theory” and obscene language. We will also cover the denials of that which were also presented by others including the involved teacher.

Story By

Tim Walker

Tim is the WVMR News Reporter. Tim is a native of Maryland who started coming to Pocahontas County in the 1970’s as a caver. He bought land on Droop Mountain off Jacox Road in 1976 and built a small house there in the early 80’s. While still working in Maryland, Tim spent much time at his place which is located on the Friars Hole Cave Preserve. Retiring in 2011 as a Lieutenant with the Anne Arundel County Police Department in Maryland, Tim finally took the plunge and moved from Maryland to his real home on Droop Mountain. He began working as the Pocahontas County Reporter for Allegheny Mountain Radio in January of 2015.

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