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Revised School Calendar Makes Things Tight for Class of 2013

With graduation locked in, seniors at the Cherry Hill's two high schools could have to make up any winter snow days on weekends.

Seniors at Cherry Hill East and West might want to start hoping for a warm winter.

The district’s school board approved a revised calendar for the 2012-13 school year Monday night, which balances out the loss of three days following Hurricane Sandy—a make-up day for West's fourth day off has yet to be determined—but it doesn’t leave much room at the end of the year.

The calendar reflects the decision to hold school on what would’ve been the two days for the canceled teachers’ convention in Atlantic City, as well as pulling Feb. 18, 2013, from a holiday to a regular school day, and at the same time, locked in graduation.

Both ceremonies will be held June 18 in Philadelphia, per the agreements approved by the board with Temple University to rent the Liacouras Center for a total of $33,200.

Though the district can still add days to the end of the school year in case of weather closures during the winter, the senior classes are out of luck—they’ll have to be done by June 18, and there’s only one solution right now.

“We would have to resort to Saturday sessions for seniors, unless we propose something else,” Superintendent Maureen Reusche said. “I want to be clear about that, seniors are the only group who would be impacted.”

Freshmen, sophomores and juniors, as well as students in all other schools in the district, would simply see days added to the end of the year in the case of weather-related closings over the winter.

Board member Eric Goodwin raised the question of whether the state of emergency that covered all of New Jersey during the storm would relax requirements on the number of school days, but Reusche said that declaration doesn’t allow for any reprieve.

And while there were some concerns raised about attendance at the end of this week on what are normally two days off, Reusche said the main focus is on staff attendance, not students, and making sure any teachers or staff with prior commitments can be covered with personal or sick time.

“We believe we’re in good standing,” she said.

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