Howard County school system pledges not to trim spring break in 2020

Jess Nocera
Contact ReporterHoward County Times

For the 2019-20 academic year, Howard County’s public schools will open the Tuesday after Labor Day and spring break won’t be shortened if bad weather causes unexpected school closings.

Under a calendar approved last week by the school board, all 77 schools will open on Sept. 3, 2019, and end June 15, 2020.

Spring break will be between April 6, 2020 and April 13, 2020.

Following the current academic year, Howard’s spring vacation will not be shortened if schools close frequently before the break due to inclement weather, such as snow.

“Spring break is a full spring break no matter what happens,” said David Larner, the acting chief human resource and leadership development officer.

The school year was extended two days during the 2017-18 year due to inclement weather. Spring break was also scaled back to make up for seven days of weather closings.

In the 2019-2020 calendar, five inclement weather days have been built in for potential inclement weather closings. If schools close unexpectedly due to inclement weather before June 15, students will make up the days between June 16 and June 22.

Any additional make up days would require additional action which could include petitioning the state for a waiver, according to Brian Bassett, schools spokesman.

The last day for school staff is June 20, 2020.

Winter break is set for Dec. 23, 2019 until Jan. 1, 2020, with schools reopening Jan. 2, 2020.

The school district will also be closed:

*Nov. 27-29, 2019 for Thanksgiving

*Jan. 20, 2020 for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day

*Feb. 17, 2020 for Presidents Day

*April 28, 2020 for the Maryland primary election

*May 25, 2020 for Memorial Day

Several times throughout the year. the school system will close or have early dismissals for various professional work days for staff.

The 2019-2020 calendar follows state law requiring at least 180 instructional school days and Gov. Larry Hogan’s 2016 executive order requiring an all state schools to open after Labor Day and end by June 15.

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