Arundel request for waiver of 5 snow days denied

Maryland Superintendent Lillian M. Lowery informed Anne Arundel County on Friday that she will not waive five days of school for the district because of snow this year.

As a result, Anne Arundel spokesman Bob Mosier said, the school district has decided to ask Lowery to allow the county to open schools on Easter Monday, making up one of the five days it needs to meet the requirement that students be in session for 180 days a year.


"So, we set about trying to make what adjustments we could now," Mosier said. "We have already filed the request for the waiver to be open on the Monday after Easter. If that is granted, then that would make the last day of school June 23."

On Tuesday, the state school board granted Lowery the authority to waive up to five days of school this year for public schools and two days for private schools. She said she would make waiver decisions on a case-by-case basis and would consider districts' "earnestness to look at the calendar to make up some of the days before asking for a waiver."

The letter from Lowery told Anne Arundel school officials that the district "hadn't done enough to make up for instructional times," Mosier said.

Other school systems have opened on the Presidents Day holiday and on professional development days.

"The State Board takes Maryland's instructional day requirements very seriously, and would like systems interested in receiving a waiver to provide information to the state superintendent on how they are meeting the needs of students who have missed extended class time this winter," Bill Reinhard, a spokesman for the Maryland Department of Education said in an email.

If Anne Arundel schools are allowed to be open Easter Monday, Mosier said, the school system might request a one-day waiver for Monday, June 23.

Other area districts that filed snow waiver requests — Carroll, Harford and Howard counties — said Friday that they had not received word. Baltimore City and Baltimore County have not yet sent in waiver requests.