School on Saturdays
Local students will have to put away the skis, snowboards and sleds and grab their books, binders and pencils this weekend as local schools gear up for a snow-induced Saturday session.
Watauga County schools were closed on Tuesday for the ninth snow day of the school year.
As a result, the Saturday make-up program will go into effect on Jan. 16.
The policy for Saturday school previously dictated implementation only after the schools reached a 10-day threshold.
Marshall Ashcraft, school-system public information director, said the system decided to implement the program early due to the possible bad weather in months to come.
School will begin at the usual time on Saturday with the exception of pre-kindergarten classes, which are exempted from Saturday make-up days. Schools will dismiss at noon for the elementary schools and 1 p.m. for Watauga High School. Buses will run and lunch will be served, though lunch schedules will be advances 30 minutes ahead of the regular times. The after school program does not operate on Saturdays.
From this point forward in the current school year, schools will be open on Saturday in a week when schools are closed due to inclement weather on a Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday, or any combination of these four days.
Schools will not open on a Saturday if they are closed on the preceding Friday.
As of Jan. 12, the last day of school for students is scheduled for May 31.
The decision to open schools on Saturday will always be announced in advance on the Alert Now automated phone messaging system, the snow line (828-264-0200), the school system Web site ( http://www.watauga.k12.nc.us), and by e-mail for parents who have registered and through local radio and television stations.