Make up days set for missed school time

The make up days have been set to account for lost school time this week in Marshalltown due to the extremely cold temperatures.

Marshalltown students will now attend school Feb. 17 (Presidents Day) as well as June 2 at the end of the school year to make up for missing Monday and Tuesday.

The Marshalltown district is already making up one day on Jan. 20 (Martin Luther King, Jr. Day) due to icy conditions which canceled school on Dec. 20.

“Closure on Tuesday was due to cold weather, low wind chill factor and a concern that even if diesel buses started, they might not continue running through the entire route, putting passengers in unsafe conditions given the below zero temperatures,” said Marshalltown Superintendent Marvin Wade.

The missed days have extended the holiday break by three days for Marshalltown students. As students return to class Wednesday, it will end a stretch of 20 days without school in town.

“It’s always a concern,” Lisa Koester, director of human resources with the school district said of the layoff. “We are going to have to pay attention and get kids back on track and back into the routine.”

Koester said an added wrench into the schedule is the fact the high school is ending its semester next week with semester tests, so these days missed would have been utilized to help prepare them for the testing.

“We can’t plan weather-related days off,” Koester said.

The Marshalltown district is not alone in trying to deal with a long holiday break. South Tama students had a lull of the same amount of time due to how the holidays fell, the break, teacher in-service days and the canceled days due to the weather.

South Tama Elementary Principal Jim Bugge said he isn’t concerned about getting back into the swing of things after the break.

“They’ll re-establish their procedures and things like they’ve done in the past,” Bugge said.

The Marshalltown School Board meeting originally scheduled for Monday this week was canceled and agenda items will move to the Jan. 20 meeting.